All about commencement

For students graduating this spring, stress levels can skyrocket in the week leading up to commencement. Students are dealing with their last round of finals and preparing for the big day, which falls on June 16 at the Rose Garden arena.

For students graduating this spring, stress levels can skyrocket in the week leading up to commencement. Students are dealing with their last round of finals and preparing for the big day, which falls on June 16 at the Rose Garden arena.

To make things a little easier on those about to enter the “real” world, here are some tips to make commencement a (relatively) hassle-free affair.

The basics

Over 1,600 students will walk this year, and each student is entitled to up to 10 tickets for family and friends. Commencement is a ticketed event, meaning that you must have a ticket to get into the Rose Garden.

There are two kinds of tickets available: Green tickets are general admission tickets, while blue tickets are for the physically impaired and will grant access half an hour earlier. Doors open at 8 a.m. for blue tickets and 8:30 a.m. for green tickets.

Graduates who require additional tickets must visit the ticket box office on the first floor of the Smith Memorial Student Union (SMSU).

Over 14,000 tickets have been requested for this year’s commencement as of June 7.

Be prepared

There are several things graduates can do to be prepared before Saturday. If you are graduating with honors, there will be a celebration Thursday, June 14 at 3 p.m. in the SMSU Ballroom, where graduates can pick up an honor cord to wear at commencement. Honor cords will also be handed out at commencement for those unable to attend the event.

What to bring

Graduates do not need their student ID for commencement, but there are a couple of things that every graduate needs to remember to bring. Bring your cap and gown, and if you are a master’s student, bring your hood.

Bring a bottle of water and make sure to also bring your reader cards, which have already been mailed out. Readers at commencement will read your name off of your reader card, so make sure your name is how you would like it to appear.

If your name is difficult to pronounce there is space for you to provide pronunciation help. There will be a table with reader cards available at commencement for those who don’t have one.

Getting there

Eat a good meal before leaving home. The ceremony is three hours long and it will be much more pleasant on a full stomach.

When you are ready to leave, show your PSU pride by choosing a sustainable way to get to commencement. Dean of Students Wendy Endress recommends using public transportation. Both the MAX and the bus system have routes that stop at the Rose Quarter and are great ways to avoid what is most likely going to be a massive traffic jam.

If you absolutely need to drive, be aware that there will be a severe bottleneck and leave early. There is parking available at the Rose Garden for $10 per car, but the arena garages fill to capacity quickly.

No matter how you end up getting to the Rose Garden, Ebru Korbek in the Portland State Commencement Office recommends arriving by 8:45 a.m. because lines start moving at 9:20.

What to do at the Rose Garden

Students will congregate at the Memorial Coliseum Exhibit Hall before moving onto the Rose Garden floor at 9:20 a.m. The hall is underneath the Rose Garden commons between the Coliseum and the Garden.

Make sure you are there by 8:45 a.m. to avoid feeling rushed. This is your chance to say goodbye to family and friends or visit the restroom. It will be your last chance to do so for up to three hours.

Stand in line with friends, because the people you are in line with are the people you will sit by during the ceremony. A small digital camera, wallet and phone are all smart things to have with you, but leave larger items with your family or friends.

Guests and graduates are allowed to take pictures and video recordings but are asked to remain seated while doing so. A professional DVD of the entire event will be available for $25 and pictures of grads receiving their diplomas will be available for $4. Each grad will have proofs mailed to their homes at no charge.

Volunteers wearing light-green shirts and nametags will be on hand to answer any questions. Commencement will take place next Saturday at 10 a.m.

Any additional questions should be e-mailed to [email protected]

The Portland State 2006-07 graduating class comprises 4,670 registered graduates. Of the graduates, there are 3,050 bachelor’s, 1,580 master’s and 40 doctorate degrees being deferred. Five-hundred sixty-one undergraduates will be graduating with honors.

The ceremony, which takes place on Saturday, June 16, at the Rose Garden arena, will feature 1,700 graduates registered to walk in the ceremony and receive their degrees. Twelve thousand friends and family are expected to attend.

The youngest graduate this year is 19 years old, and the eldest is 77. Female graduates comprise 58 percent of the 2006-07 graduating class. Fifty countries are being represented by international students, and 145 Oregon towns are represented.The top field of study for this year’s graduating class is business administration. This year’s class is larger than last year’s, which featured 4,528 total graduates.-Robert Seitzinger