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Rain Or Shine, Graduation Is Inside

Updated: Mar 1, 2020

By Franchesca Carrera

Photo credit: Franchesca Carrera

The Simpson University Spring 2020 Graduation is a little under two months away and new details about the ceremony are emerging.

At the fireside chat on Monday, February 10th, President Norm Hall announced where the ceremony will be held.

In the past, the commencement was located on the cross-field.

The last two years, the location was up in the air, until weather played a major role in the decision to hold it in the Grant Center, said Hall.

For the third year in a row, the spring graduation ceremony will be held in the gym.

At the fireside chat, Dr. Hall mentioned the struggles that come with having the ceremony outside.

He said since the weather could turn bad within days of the ceremony, both the outside and inside venues need to be set up.

The decision to keep graduation in the Grant Center comes mostly from money, explained Hall. In order to prepare both the gym and the field, it costs $8,000, whereas it costs significantly less to forego the outdoor setup altogether.

Despite the finances, not everyone is happy with the decision.

“I think having graduation outside makes it a lot more sentimental. Especially around the cross since we’re a Christian school,” said Shay’Lee Dayman. “Being outside will also create better photos with natural lighting, photos don’t always come out very well with the lighting in the gym.”

Besides the lighting in the gym not being appealing, the space also isn’t big enough. According to a plaque posted on the outside of the Grant Center, the maximum capacity for floor seating is 1543. This results in graduates only getting a certain number of tickets, as stated in a recent email from the university. For graduating seniors with large families, such as Alex Cooper, this is not ideal.

“If graduation is inside I will be crammed and feel claustrophobic and it won’t be enjoyable because there are people who have supported me throughout my journey who won’t be in the stands cheering me on sharing what will probably be the best day of my life because I would have accomplished something that no one in my family has done,” explained Cooper.

Dr. Hall has made it clear that he feels it is more beneficial to have graduation indoors and despite the pushback from students, that is where it will remain.

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