Resources for Graduation Event Professionals

How to assist limited mobility spectators at commencement

The number of people with mobility limitations as a percentage of all spectators can be slightly higher at commencement than at other school events. Grandparents and the elderly are more likely to attend these once-in-a-lifetime ceremonies, and unfortunately with age comes a higher likelihood of some type of mobility concern.  Additionally, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, there are 3.6 million military veterans with service-related injuries.  With this in mind, what accommodations can event coordinators make for those commencement spectators who have limited mobility?

Topics: Best Practices Etiquette

7 considerations to make before selling premium seats at commencement

Is it appropriate to charge parents and spectators for “premium seating” at commencement? This has been happening for a few years, though is not yet a widespread trend. Before we dive into this topic, we first need to establish that there are two types of premium seats. The first is based on comfort, and the second is based on vantage point. One has a remarkably different stigma attached to it than the other.

Topics: Commencement Preparations Best Practices Etiquette Commencement Photography

How the Univ. of South Florida handled selfie pictures at commencement

The University of South Florida in Tampa recently made headlines by prohibiting graduates from taking “selfie” pictures while being individually recognized on stage during commencement. Making a similar announcement was Bryant University in Smithfield, Rhode Island. Both institutions are valued clients of GradImages, so this story certainly caught our attention.

Selfie picture taken at graduationCommencement policies are generally not newsworthy. However, this made national headlines because it highlights a shifting sense of appropriateness among a generation who grew up with mobile technology. For a dignified event like commencement, administrators are frustrated because common etiquette and well-established behavioral norms now seem to evade a growing number of individuals to the point where a directive like this has become necessary.

Topics: Commencement Preparations Best Practices Etiquette GradImages Commencement Photography

It's time for a social media cleanup

It is very common for a company looking to hire someone to call his or her references for more information. There is a new reference many people might not consider but companies are taking full advantage of this source now. That reference is social media. In 2012, CareerBuilder estimated 37% of companies used social media to screen applicants. However, a more recent survey by MediaBistro reported significantly higher percentages, which perhaps indicates a rapid trend among hiring managers.

Topics: Etiquette Grad Fair Photography Student Portraits

The proper attire for commencement ceremony staff

Commencement is a distinctive occasion.  Graduates will normally be dressed in caps & gowns, as will faculty as many institutions.  However, for individuals not wearing graduation regalia but with a visible role on the ceremony floor, conventional wisdom dictates that they be wearing conservative, professional business attire.  It's a sign of respect to the graduates, their families, the school, and the dignity of the event.

Topics: Commencement Preparations Best Practices Etiquette GradImages

How to use commencement to remember students who have passed away

It is always a tragedy when a student passes away.  Regardless whether it was unexpected or followed a long battle with illness; the cause does not make it any less painful.

Since commencement is typically the last official gathering before graduates start a new chapter in their lives, it can also serve a final opportunity for the graduating class to pause and remember those who are unable to be in attendance with them.  Below are four common ways that schools and universities across North America memorialize students who have passed away.

Topics: Commencement Preparations Best Practices Etiquette

3 ways to respond to spectator disruptions at commencement

In an earlier installment, we looked at some methods to help discourage spectator disruptions at commencement.  Here in our concluding segment, we will examine some methods at your disposal to respond to these types of outbursts when they occur.

Topics: Commencement Preparations Best Practices Etiquette

6 ways to discourage spectator outbursts at commencement

In Part 2 of our series, we will look at some steps you can take to discourage spectator outbursts at commencement, both before and during your ceremony.

Topics: Commencement Preparations Best Practices Etiquette

A guide for handling spectator disruptions at commencement

Spectator outbursts at commencement are an unfortunate reality.  As a commencement coordinator, you obviously cannot control when these outbursts will occur, but you can take proactive steps to discourage such disruptions, and reduce their effects on the next graduate waiting to be recognized.

Topics: Commencement Preparations Etiquette