Not Too Early to Plan for Commencement

commencment blog 1A blog about June 2015 Commencement—already? It’s never too early to highlight some important deadlines and remind faculty and staff members about participation.

Commencement date, place and time
Commencement 2015 will take place on Sunday, June 14 at the Moda Center for 2014-2015 academic year graduates. We will have two ceremonies:

  • College of Liberal Arts and Sciences will hold its commencement from 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
  • College of the Arts, College of Urban and Public Affairs, Graduate School of Education, Maseeh College of Engineering & Computer Science, School of Business Administration, and School of Social Work will hold their commencement from 3:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Deadline for student speaker nominations
PSU has a great tradition of student speakers at commencement. It is wonderful for graduates to hear from one of their own, as well as for guests to hear directly from our students. There will be two student speakers at each ceremony (ideally one graduate and one undergraduate).

We need faculty and staff members to encourage students who would be good speakers and representatives of the Class of 2015 to apply to be a student speaker. The application is now available and due April 3, 2015.

commencment 2Faculty participation
Your presence demonstrates the value of a PSU education, and is an important sign to our students and the larger community. Attendance at commencement by tenured faculty is specified as a responsibility in the AAUP contract (Article 4).

Rental of regalia for faculty is reimbursed by AAUP. You may pre-order your own institutional regalia by April 17 or rent generic regalia on-site at the Graduation Fairs on May 20 and 21.

commencement 3 We need volunteers!
Ever wanted to see the Moda Center behind the scenes?    Volunteer opportunities will be posted on the website in early April.

  • Saturday, June 13 we need faculty to sign up for 2 hours to help set up (in addition to participating in the ceremonies on Sunday)
  • Sunday, June 14 we need staff to sign up

Provost’s Commencement Challenge:
I want to get as many faculty and staff to participate and assist with commencement. Last year only 150 of our nearly 1000 faculty attended commencement. So, how about another Provost’s Challenge—this time to identify the academic department (or program in the case of colleges without departments) that can achieve the greatest proportion of participation in commencement.

The commencement office will track the names of all faculty and staff who participate as volunteers on Saturday, June 13, or Sunday, June 14, or participate in the actual commencement ceremonies. The academic department/program with the greatest participation rate will be guests at a reception at my home to be scheduled in Fall 2015.

Faculty recognition lunch
We will hold a luncheon between ceremonies on June 14 from 12:30 – 2:00 p.m. to honor and recognize faculty award recipients, Senate committee chairs, emeritus professors, and honorary degree recipients. You may RSVP for the lunch when you sign up for commencement. The recognition portion of the program will take place from 1:15 – 1:45 p.m.

Honorary Doctorate Recipients
This year we will bestow on three individuals an honorary doctorate from PSU.
Dr. Fariborz Maseeh (attending the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Commencement)
Terry L. Cross (attending Professional Schools Commencement)
Jeannine Cowles (attending Professional Schools Commencement)

Please mark June 14 on your calendar now, and plan to join me for our 2015 Commencement. Your attendance is so important to our students and their friends and families. If you have any questions about commencement, please send them to


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