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Is commencement that big of a deal?

Samantha Gervais

Assistant Opinions Editor

Photo via Pixabay/Pexels

Rhode Island College’s upcoming commencement ceremony is scheduled for Saturday, May 13 at the AMP, and I’ve got to say, I’m not ready to graduate yet – but I feel the excitement around campus with everyone else. It is always an exciting time to graduate, knowing that the culmination of work, and money, sadly, has come up to the point that you can finally celebrate with your friends and family.

During my graduation at CCRI, one thing that made me feel like one of the coolest things out there was all the regalia I got to wear. That is probably one aspect I like about graduation the most: Wearing the regalia. The regalia isn’t perfect, however, with one part I dislike being those graduation caps. Whoever designed that hat must’ve wanted to make us look funny with that pointed top and not wanted them to fit, in my humble opinion. But they have a certain charm to them, I think.

However, when it comes to commencement over the past few years, I have heard more and more lately that students aren’t wanting to go to their graduation ceremonies. Hearing this made me curious. Why not go and celebrate your accomplishments?

One of my favorite things as a psychology major, though, is knowing both sides of things. So, I understand why people enjoy commencement as much as they do, but not the other side of this topic. I asked a friend of mine who is graduating this semester why she wasn’t attending her commencement, and her reason was that she didn’t like the attention. Though another reason she gave me was one that really interested me. She is going into graduate school, and she said she would rather wait until the “big diploma” comes.

“That’s the time I feel it's most appropriate to celebrate,” she said. “That’s when the end comes and I’ve accomplished my goal.” This was an interesting take on commencement.

Different perspectives are wildly interesting to me. The more people are open minded and understand other people’s point of view with certain things, the more of a peaceful society we can be. Right?

Regardless, to the class that is graduating this year, congratulations on all your hard work. You earned every second, no matter how you decide to celebrate. Just make sure to be safe and remember to be proud of yourself for how far you’ve come to get to this point. No matter what, you worked hard to get here. Congratulations to the Class of 2023.


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