The 2010 spring Commencement ceremony at UM will take place Saturday, May 15, on the Oval.
It is the first time in the University’s 117-year history that the main Commencement ceremony will be held outdoors on the Oval. The ceremony will start at 10 a.m. — rain or shine — followed by smaller ceremonies for individual schools and colleges at 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.
UM traditionally holds two all-school Commencement ceremonies in the Adams Center. This year there will be one main ceremony, with about 1,800 graduates attending, along with 9,000 to 10,000 faculty members, friends and family members.
Registrar Edwin Johnson said the idea for an outdoor ceremony came about after President George M. Dennison attended his grandson’s outdoor graduation ceremony. Dennison thought holding Commencement on UM’s Oval would be a great opportunity to showcase the recent additions and improvements on campus.
“Commencement stands as one of the most important days in the lives of young people about to launch careers,” Dennison said. “I remember very well the feeling of having accomplished a great deal, but with much more to come now that I had succeeded academically. I personally believe we should make the event as spectacular as we can for the graduating students and their families.”
UM Executive Vice President Jim Foley said private funding will cover any additional costs incurred from staging an outdoor ceremony.