All-campus graduation ceremony discontinued

Chancellor Robert C. Dynes announced last month the cancellation of all-campus commencement ceremonies after a four-year trial program.

“”Our longstanding tradition of separate undergraduate college commencement ceremonies is a meaningful way for our new graduates to celebrate with their classmates and loved ones, and that tradition will continue to cap off each academic year at UCSD,”” Dynes said.

The all-campus graduation ceremony was launched as a four-year pilot project by the UCSD administration in 1997. The ceremony has endured several difficulties in past years, including the late cancellation of Maya Angelou in 2000. She was replaced by San Diego businessman Irwin Jacobs.

Now, however, “”garnering feedback from the campus community and consulting with the Associated Students,”” Dynes said, “”the decision has been made to end this tryout and return to holding only the smaller college graduation ceremonies, which recognize the achievements of individual students.””

A.S. President Jeff Dodge said that the A.S. executive officers who were working over the summer were approached with “”concern over commencement in general,”” and that those officers decided last year’s all-campus commencement would be the starting point for any decisions made about the future of the ceremony.

Dodge said the A.S. Council has spent much of this year looking into possible alternatives to all-campus commencement.

“”Ideally, and of course, we continue to support some kind of all-campus event at the end of the year for seniors,”” he said.

Dodge said this event, which is still in the planning stages, would allow seniors from all colleges to convene and celebrate their achievements in a more informal setting, alleviating the pressure on graduates and their families to attend two ceremonies in one day.

“”Graduates and their families were not interested in attending two ceremonies,”” Dodge said. “”Especially not one in which none of their achievements would be recognized.””

The A.S. Council has a meeting scheduled next week to go over possibilities for this alternative celebration with the administration. The dates for four of the five colleges’ graduation ceremonies have already been decided upon.

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