Photo by Josh Drinkard
By Allen Brewer
Sophomores from Northwest who have received all of their credit hours will be leaving soon to begin chasing their dreams.
For students who are interested in walking in the spring commencement ceremony, there is one more thing to do to get their diploma.
This year marks the 101st commencement in Northwest history. At Howard Coliseum, there will be three ceremonies for students receiving degrees or certificates from Northwest on May 12.
The event will start with students receiving an Associate of Arts degree at 8 a.m. Students who will be receiving Career Certificates will be honored at 11:30 a.m. Lastly, students receiving an Associate of Applied Science degree will be honored at 2:30 p.m.
According to the Office of Admissions and Records, there will be 203 students participating in the Associate of Arts ceremony, 216 students for Career Certificates and 169 students for Associate of Applied Science. Students from all Northwest campuses will be in attendance.
“The numbers are a little lower than last year,” Kelly Stull, transcript specialist, said. “Numbers do fluctuate, but the difference is usually between 10-20 students. It changes but not a lot.”
The events will start with an invocation by students in each degree program. This year’s invocational speakers will be Bethany Starkey, for Associate of Arts, Gwint Fisher, Career Certificates and Gabriel Aldridge, Associate of Applied Science ceremony.
Northwest President, Dr. Gary Lee Spears will then introduce the keynote speaker, Dr. Tony Ammeter. Dr. Ammeter is the director of Outreach and Continuing Studies, associate provost, dean of General Studies and associate professor of Management and Management information Systems: Provost/VC for Academic Affairs at The University of Mississippi.
After the address, Dr. Spears will award diplomas/certificates to the students attending. A performance of “America the Beautiful” by the Northwest Singers and WInd Ensemble and a group singing of the college’s alma mater will close out each ceremony.
Students who will be walking are asked to attend practice rehearsals before the actual ceremony. Students receiving an Associate of Arts degree will meet on May 1, Career Certificates will meet on May 2 and Associate of Applied Science will meet May 3; caps and gowns will be picked up at rehearsal for no additional cost. All of the rehearsals will be held at 2 p.m.
The caps and gowns are gray, and students are asked to wear dark pants/dresses and dark shoes under their gowns. The gowns will be turned in after the ceremony, but students will be able to keep the caps. Students have been asked not to decorate their caps and gowns before the ceremony to retain uniformity.
“Males are supposed to wear dark dress pants and shoes,” Stull said. “Females should wear dresses/dress pants and dark low heel shoes; they will be standing up a lot.”
Much of the ceremony will remain the same as years past. Students who choose not to walk in the ceremony will still receive their diploma in the mail.