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Wide shot of commencement at the Stan Sheriff Center

The University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa will break with tradition in spring 2017 and hold two combined undergraduate and advanced degree commencement ceremonies on May 13. The pilot program will replace the customary single undergraduate ceremony in the morning and advanced degree ceremony in the afternoon. The aim is to provide the best possible experience for graduates and their families on this very exciting and important day.

“This new division of ceremonies is centered around the value of having all undergraduate and advanced degree graduates—from the same schools and colleges—walk together,” said UH Mānoa Interim Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Michael Bruno. “This may serve to inspire undergraduates to pursue advanced degrees as they see their teaching assistants and other peers in their disciplines receive their master’s and doctorates.”

The spring undergraduate ceremony draws very large crowds, and unfortunately later arriving attendees are often redirected to overflow seating where the ceremony can be viewed on a monitor when the Stan Sheriff Center reaches capacity. Under the proposed pilot model, more seating is expected to be available for family and friends at their graduate’s respective ceremony. The two smaller ceremonies are also intended to lessen traffic congestion and increase parking availability.

At the 2016 spring commencement exercises, nearly 1,800 undergraduates participated in the morning ceremony, and approximately 600 advanced degree graduates walked in the afternoon. If the new pilot format had been implemented, each ceremony would have included around 1,200 graduates, which is the expected number for each of the spring 2017 ceremonies.

The morning ceremony will consist of undergraduate and advanced degree students from:

The afternoon ceremony will consist of undergraduate and advanced degree students from:

Graduates at commencement

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