Commencement celebrates winter graduates

Winter Commencement at Stevenson University in the Owings Mills Gym (Photo from the Villager Files).

Winter Commencement will be held on Monday, Dec. 19, 2016, at 3 p.m. The ceremony will be held on the Greenspring campus and will last approximately two hours.

Commencement ceremonies will be held in the Greenspring gym on Dec. 19. (Photo from the Villager Files)

Commencement ceremonies will be held in the Greenspring gym on Dec. 19. (Villager file photo)

While Stevenson holds its traditional Commencement in the spring, winter Commencement has also become a momentous ceremony. Tracy Bolt, registrar, who oversees anything involving the students during the ceremony said her favorite part of Commencement is “handing diplomas to Dr. Manning to give to the students” [Editor’s note: Because of Dr. Manning’s retirement, he will not participate in Commencement].

This winter, 245 students are planning to participate in the December Commencement ceremonies, adding that every year, the number of students who participate in winter Commencement increases, according to Bolt.

Students should arrive 45 minutes prior to the ceremony to ensure solid preparation. Doors for the ceremony will open an hour prior to the ceremony for guests. Seating will be on a first-come, first-served basis.

Bolt encourages guests of graduates to arrive early. Those who are expecting guests with special access needs should contact a member of Stevenson’s security team before the day of Commencement to make suitable arrangements.

While there are no explicit dress requirements, both men and women should aim to look their best. Those who would like to decorate their cap should make sure it is appropriate for ceremony environment and that it does not become a distraction.

Students are not permitted to take selfies on stage. Stevenson will provide photography information and will have a professional photographer on site.

“In May, graduating students are divided into three ceremonies based on school, while in December all schools participate in one ceremony,” said Bolt, adding that in December the Commencement speaker is the Dawson Professor of the Year.

Chemistry instructor Diane Payne, who is also the director of the Office of Sponsored Programs and Research, was presented with the 2016 Rose Dawson Award for full-time faculty and will be the winter Commencement speaker.

Graduation awards, including the prestigious SU Pin, will be announced at Commencement. Other awards include the Elizabeth McWethy Award, the Orsia F. Young Leadership Award, the Marion and Henry J. Knott Achievement Award, the Dean’s Award for Exceptional Scholarship, the President’s Award for Scholarly and Creative Achievement, the John Mitchell Award, the Dorothy Stang Award and the Outstanding Part-Time Student Award. For more information about winter Commencement, contact Tracy Bolt through campus email.

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