The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

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Students still not satisfied with commencement

Many students breathed a sigh of relief upon learning that their names would be called at graduation, but not all were excited.

“I don’t consider walking across a stage to shake someone’s hand and receive a fake diploma a validation of my college education,” wrote Jerian DiMattei, a senior, on the Facebook event ‘We Want A REAL Graduation,’ which was credited in helping inspire the change of plans.

“I’m graduating, I’m receiving a degree, I’m proud and my family will be proud of me whether I walk, sit or don’t even go,” she continued.

The uproar began when the news was announced that because of the 3,000 students that are graduating at the commencement on Queens Campus, their names were not going to be called.

It was reported that in the last four years, students were leaving during the commencement, creating a safety issue throughout the ceremony. Also, many students had complained from previous years about the wait and the weather issues.

“I understand the whole wanting your named to be called, but once it is, you have to sit there for the rest of the people’s names to be called,” said Christopher Kaatz, senior. “It’ll be either under a beating hot sun, or downpour of rain.”

DiMattei also stated that staying outside for a long period of time would affect not only herself, but her family too.

“I want my family to be there and I know my grandparents would have a difficult time sitting in the sun for five hours,” she said.

With the original decision being changed again, the graduates’ names are going to be called. While most are ecstatic to hear this, there are some that still want something to be done about the time element of the ceremony. This includes cutting down the time for Guest speakers.

“I don’t get the point of guest speakers, I just want my diploma,” said Laura Ciminera, a senior.

The commencement committee chose to have one ceremony over individual school ceremonies because they feel that having one ceremony will keep with the idea of unity stated in the University’s mission. Still, some students feel that it would easily resolve the issues if graduation was celebrated within the different schools.

“Just separate the ceremony by schools; it’s really not that hard. We have the space for it and all other colleges I know do it, like UConn or George Washington University,” stated Cara Cherepon on the Facebook’s event page.

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