Jonelle Coutinho 0

WSU Commencement

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Sign your name! In the description:

if you're a student, write your graduating year and your majors!

if you're staff/faculty, write your department!

Recently, the administration of Westfield State University has opted to alter the commencement ceremony of its graduating classes. Part of this change is altering how names are read aloud. For the past few years, department chairs have read their respective students names. Under the new construction of commencement, two specifically chosen faculty members will be asked to read all of the names from the graduating class, instead.

This petition addresses the importance of a specific ritual of WSU’s commencement ceremony -- the name-reading of graduating students by their respective department chairs. Students who sign their name, graduation year, and respective major are signing an agreement that they hold this ritual of the utmost importance. Faculty are also encouraged to sign their name and make a statement that this aspect of commencement influences and impacts their experience at Westfield equally important.

We, as students, have created this petition to demonstrate that the significance of name-reading by department chairs is pivotal in our “Westfield Experience.” We would rather sit through forty-five more minutes of commencement than lose the experience that is shared during commencement.

We uphold this tradition for a variety of reasons

  • This ritual exemplifies the relationship between students and department faculty, respectively and equally. We have spent four years together. Name-readings by faculty we know and love greatly shapes and influences the experience of commencement.
  • The quirks and personalities of every department are showcased in a singular event, completely unique to our Westfield Experience
  • It is less likely that faculty from our respective departments will "butcher" our names, as they have been with us, taught us, and talked to us personally.
  • Department chairs reading their own students' names is something that makes Westfield unique and stand alone amongst other public universities.

Under the altered commencement ceremony, Westfield will lose a characteristic and quality that the Westfield community holds dear. By including the departments of students, we demonstrate that the experience of chairs reading names is equally important across disciplines, regardless of department size. Through the inclusion of faculty, we prove that commencement isn't just a celebration for students, but for faculty as well.

This petition will make its way to President Torrecilha and his team. in an effort to change the minds of administration.

Sign your name! In the description:

if you're a student, write your graduating year and your majors!

if you're staff/faculty, write your department!

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