Isaiah 6:8

8 Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?”And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”

Friday, May 20, 2016

Thoughts On Graduation

I have my fourth of four graduations tonight.  I honestly will be glad for them to be over.  I am tired of the speeches, the little productions, et al.  Yet, I will be there....again.  I will sit in my faculty seat....again....and I will cry when I hear the senior's names called....again.  I love these guys.  I know that this is the end for me.....and an ending for them.  I have graduated once from high school and twice from college.  Each time was a special event for me and for my family.  At my high school graduation we wore white caps and gowns, for both college graduations we wore black ones.  The first college graduation the robe was just like the high school one.  The second graduation, with my Masters degree, my robe was black but had odd sleeves and the stole did not hang hung to the back with my major in velvet and the school colors in satin in the back.  I felt very professional.  My only regret is that I always had to wear a mortar board and did not get to wear the cool tam topper.  It isn't going to happen....I am now on the countdown for retirement.....but, since this is the beginning of the Graduation Ceremonies I thought I would share some things with you about graduation.  Did you know?  The graduation ceremony is a cultural tradition that is considered a rite of passage. The ceremony marks a transition from one stage in a student's life to another. Arnold van Gennep coined the phrase "Rite of passage" in 1909 and he believed the rite of passage included the following three steps: Separation from Society, Transformation, and Return to Society in the new status.   The graduation commencement ceremonies usually begin with "Pomp and Circumstance as the graduates enter, speeches from faculty or special speakers, which may include the actual students and music. Diplomas are awarded, and Pomp and Circumstance "Pomp and Circumstance" is  played as the students recess.  The Baccalaureate Ceremony is considered the beginning of "Rite of passage."  "Pomp and Circumstance", was composed by Sir Edward Elgar, was first performed on October 19, 1901 in Liverpool, England. As the students commence and recess to and from the auditorium it plays for them.  The Baccalaureate Ceremony origin is said to go back to 1432. The first Baccalaureate Ceremony commenced at Oxford University. At that time each student was required to deliver a sermon in Latin as part of his academic applications.  What we call today a "cap," which is worn by students and faculty in some cases, used to be called a "hood." The "hood" is believed to be dated back to the Celtic Groups. At that time in history only the Druid priests wore capes with hoods, symbolizing their superiority and higher intelligence. Today, the "hood" or "cap" is used to identify the student's academic institution and degree. The tassel that is attached (and sometimes the color of the cap and gown or scarf) is used to signify the student's academic achievement within the academic structure.  Prior to the 1950's the color of the graduation gown was gray. This was practiced only in the U.S. Colors in European countries were used as far back as the 1800s to signify the area of study. Sometime during the 1950's students began to ask for cap and gowns that represented their school colors. Their wish was granted and the emergence of varying colors used for gowns caught on.  During the 12th and 13th centuries the academic dress for graduation was born. At that time the standard dress for faculty or students was clerical dress. It wasn't until 1321 that the University of Coimbra decided that all Doctors, Bachelors, and Licentiates would be required to wear gowns.  It is so very sad when the graduates choose to forgo  their graduation when it's a moment that can't be repeated and you want to have that one moment to shine. It is a very special moment when you walk across the stage and show you did something extraordinary. Graduation is  mom and dad's time to brag about your success since they want to show the world what you accomplished. It's an exciting time that nobody should miss and should always do every moment they get because you only get that one chance to do it and it only comes once in a lifetime.

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