University of Vermont

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University of Vermont’s 211th Commencement Ceremony Set for Sunday, May 19, on the Green

The University of Vermont will celebrate its 211th commencement on Sunday, May 19 outdoors on the University Green. The ceremony begins with the procession at 8:20 a.m. Tickets are not required.

The main ceremony and each college’s ceremony will be webcast live. See the complete schedule of all ceremonies and receptions.

This year, President Tom Sullivan will confer degrees on approximately 3,258 graduates, including 2,577 bachelor's, 439 master's, 122 doctoral, and 106 M.D. degree recipients, in addition to 14 post-baccalaureate certificates. Among expected degree recipients are students from 44 states and 79 international students from 17 countries. Approximately 1,207 graduates are from Vermont. The graduating class includes an expected 379 African, Latino/a, Asian and Native American (ALANA) and bi/multi-racial students.

Wynton Marsalis, one of the world’s great jazz and classical musicians, will deliver the address to graduates at the main ceremony and receive an honorary doctor of humane letters degree. Born to a musical family in New Orleans, Marsalis is celebrated for his contributions as a performer, composer, and educator. He has nine Grammy awards to his credit and is the only artist to win both jazz and classical Grammys in the same year (1983) repeating the same feat the following year (1984). In 1987, Marsalis co-founded a jazz program at Lincoln Center, which in 1996 became Lincoln Center’s twelfth constituent, Jazz at Lincoln Center. In 1997, Marsalis became the first jazz musician awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Music for his epic oratorio, Blood on the Fields. He has written six books, most recently Moving to Higher Ground: How Jazz Can Change Your Life (Random House, 2008) with Geoffrey C. Ward; and Squeak, Rumble, Whomp! Whomp! Whomp! (Candlewick, 2012), illustrated by Paul Rogers. Today Marsalis serves as Jazz at Lincoln Center’s managing and artistic director.

Four others will receive honorary degrees at the ceremony: James Douglas, Kathy Giusti, William Meezan and John Tampas. Learn more about these recipients.

For the second year, Guidebook, a free mobile app with event details, maps, local information and more, is available for download, and free wireless access will be provided at the ceremonies by choosing the “UVM Guest” network; no password is required.

The following street closings are planned in conjunction with commencement: from Friday, May 17, at 7 p.m. through Sunday, May 19, at 8 p.m., University Place will be closed from Colchester Avenue to Main Street, and South Prospect Street will be closed from College Street to the University Health Center entrance. In addition, on Sunday, May 19 from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., South Prospect Street will be closed from Colchester Avenue to Main Street, and College Street will be closed from South Prospect Street to South Williams Street.

Shuttle buses will run between ceremony sites and parking areas. A parking map is available on the Commencement 2013 website.  Guests are encouraged to carpool when possible and take shuttles from hotels when provided. Parking on residential streets is prohibited.

In keeping with the university’s end to the sale of bottled water on campus, guests are encouraged to bring a refillable water bottle from home. Water kiosks will be available on the green, where cups will also be provided for those without a water bottle. Commemorative commencement refillable water bottles will be available for purchase at the UVM Bookstore, at the commencement concession stands and at all food service locations.

Guests should also note that only service animals, and not pets, are allowed during the main commencement ceremony and each of the college and school ceremonies.

More information about commencement weekend is available on the Commencement 2013 website.