Brown to address first Winter Commencement

The University will hold its first mid-year Commencement ceremony at 2 p.m. Sunday in the Smith Center.

Jane Brown, faculty chair and professor of journalism and mass communication, will deliver the graduation address. The Winter Commencement recognizes students who complete degree work in August or December.

"The University wants to provide more appropriate recognition for our August and December graduates with a true commencement ceremony," Chancellor Paul Hardin said. "Carolina wants to acknowledge properly these students' accomplishments with a ceremony that they and their families will be proud to attend. With Jane Brown, the outstanding leader of our faculty, as speaker it will be a memorable occasion."

The University community is invited to help honor these new graduates.

More than 1,200 undergraduate, graduate and professional students have applied to receive their degrees in December. Graduates will wear traditional caps and gowns, and doctoral students will process across the stage. The platform party also will wear academic regalia, and music will be performed by student musicians.

Following the ceremony, a reception will be held on the concourse.

Recognition program held before

Before this year, the University held only the Spring Commencement. August and December graduates for the past several years have been honored with a recognition program but had to return to campus in May if they wanted a full commencement ceremony.

The Winter Commencement has retained one feature from the recognition program--having a faculty member give the featured address.

Brown, who joined the faculty in 1977, was elected faculty chair last spring. Her research focuses on how adolescents use the mass media to develop a sense of themselves. She currently is examining adolescents' sexuality and risky behavior and is involved in a national effort aimed at curbing violence on television.

Special effort from Physical Plant

To prepare for the Winter Commencement ceremony, the Physical Plant maintenance, housekeeping and grounds crews will have to pull an all-nighter.

"Setting up for Commencement is something not out of the ordinary," said Ned V. Collett, Smith Center managing director. "But to go from basketball to Commencement in little more than 12 hours is quite a challenge."

Beginning when the final horn sounds ending the basketball game with VMI the night before, crews will work through the night and into the next day cleaning up debris, restocking rest rooms, tearing down the basketball goals, moving the retractable seats, building the stage and setting up the sound system--to name just a few tasks.

This must be coordinated with delivering and setting up the chairs, supplying flowers and other plants, and delivering and putting into place the signs that direct the students during the ceremony.

Collett said he felt everything would go smoothly because of the Smith Center's outstanding crews of housekeeping, maintenance and grounds workers, and because of the planning of Cat Williams, director of special projects in the Division of University Relations.

Jean Teal sorts some of the hundreds of tassels as she prepares for the sale of caps and gowns for the University's first Winter Commencement. Teal, who worked at Student Stores for 20 years before retiring, returned to help out for this graduation.

  
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Last Modified: 1994 Dec 14
Suggestions to: Judy Hallman (judy_hallman@unc.edu)