In May I graduated from university with a Bachelor of Education. It was an important moment of my life that I had been waiting for a long time. It’s not every day that I get to dress up so I bought a lovely navy blue maxi dress for the occasion and beaded navy high heels and silver jewellery.
My dad always insists on going very early to everything so I was the first graduate to be gowned that day. It was a bit awkward being stared at as everyone arrived but soon there were dozens of people dressed up in their graduation gowns and caps. The graduation gowns were black and we had a stripe on one side to represent the colour of our faculty. My gown had a lavender stripe and there were other graduates who had yellow, silver or blue ones. I forget what their colours were for but I know that people graduated with law, business and science degrees on that day too.
The graduation ceremony was held in a small venue because we are a small school. There were about two hundred graduates on the day and the most came from the Education faculty. It was a big reunion for us because our studies had officially ended last year and we hadn't seen each other for six months. It was good to see everyone and learn what everyone was doing.
|photo courtesy by usq.edu.au|
Graduations usually take a very long time because there’s a lot of waiting around. My family had discussed going to a local garden to have pictures taken. However, I couldn't leave my friend Jennifer by herself because her family had not arrived. So I told my folks that they could go off to have lunch while I waited around with Jennifer .There were no refreshments available until after the ceremony so I didn't want them to get hungry.
Jennifer and I passed the time by taking photos. I think Jennifer didn't want to show it but I believe she was preoccupied with thoughts about whether her family would make it on time. I was worried about that as well and whether we’d both miss out on a school tradition while waiting for her folks to show up. Our school has a tradition where graduates meet at town square and march all the way to the graduation venue. We also have a bagpiper and town crier accompany us during the walk.
Fortunately, Jennifer’s folks arrived just in time. We had enough time to do a brisk walk to town square. All the graduates were already there when we arrived and we were all herded into alphabetical order. We waited for twenty minutes in line until we heard the town crier ring a bell and announce that on the year of our lord 2014 that we were the graduating class. The bagpiper started playing and we started a slow march to the venue.
|on our way to the venue-photo courtesy of usq.edu.au|
The funny thing was that the administrators always made us stop to press the pedestrian crossing every time when had to cross a road. So it made a five minute walk into a ten minute walk. When we got to the hall, all the guests were already inside. The bagpiper still played as we walked down the middle aisle towards our seats. It was like being in a wedding.
We had the usual speeches from the invited special guests and valedictorian. After that, I got my degree with no fuss.
We had afternoon tea and professional photos after the ceremony. I was a bit hungry but there weren't any sandwiches or good cakes left. My family hadn't eaten much as well so we decided to get some take out on the way home. Before we left, I had to return my graduation cap and gown. The university people gave me a souvenir graduation cap. Sometimes I wear it when I at home. Graduations are special days and I wonder if in the future whether I will do further study and have another one.