Graduation Ceremony tips for professors.

Mortar board for graduation ceremoniesIt’s that time again, so here are a few tips to make this ‘glorious’ event even more glorious…er.

  1. When you’re sitting on stage, remember that the ceremony is being recorded; and so are you.
  2. For women, don’t wear seven inch stiletto heels. If you trip and fall, it will most likely ‘go viral’ on Youtube.
  3. Don’t drink lots of coffee, tea, or water before the ceremony; you can’t get up, walk off the stage, go to the bathroom, come back, and sit back down (you’re not in a movie theatre!).
  4. When walking up to the stage, periodically wave and give a lot of ‘thumbs-up’ gestures towards the audience; it will make you look popular.
  5. Don’t eat ‘gassy’ foods before the ceremony; enough said.
  6. If you can, sit in a front row seat on the stage so you can see how well your students ‘clean-up’.
  7. If you see a student walking across the stage and you are a bit surprised that they are even graduating, don’t have a look of “Are you kidding me?” written all over your face.
  8. For men, make sure your socks match and that they match the colour of your suit (and no white gym socks!). All that people will see below the gown line when you’re sitting on stage are the lower part of your pant legs, your shoes…and your socks.
  9. Pretend to enjoy all of the convocation speeches. Just think about summer vacation; it will put a permanent smile on your face.
  10. Stick around after the ceremony so you can meet the graduates parents. It will give you a chance to praise their son or daughter’s academic achievements, sharp wit, and ‘exemplary’ manners. Do this while the student is standing there (they will be forever in your debt!).
  11. Turn off your cell phone. You don’t want your personal ringtone going off during a speech, especially if it is one of the songs listed in my post above.
  12. After the ceremony, go to a restaurant or pub just to ‘hang out’ with your colleagues. You will be guaranteed a few laughs.

If you have any of your own ‘tips’, leave me a comment.

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