Academic Ceremonies - December Commencement

Ida M. Russin
President of the Staff Council

Ida Russin

Good afternoon. I am honored to be asked to participate as a speaker for these graduation ceremonies. Serving as Staff Council President, I represent approximately 1900 staff members who work at The University of Vermont. Staff like Faculty, contribute much to the student experience at UVM and we’re often quite visible. We assisted you with your admission to the University, and we welcomed you at Orientation. We met with you directly to manage and navigate the complexities of financing your education. We greeted you daily in the Dean’s offices and departments as you headed off to classes each day. We supported the inspiring faculty who taught you, and we watched you grow, learn, and succeed. You saw us daily in your residence halls, making sure everyone was safe and sound, we offered academic support where it was needed, and we carefully checked the formatting of your theses and dissertations.

But remember there are other staff members who keep everything operating smoothly, though you may never see them eye to eye. These staff members set up the registration schedule, establish student email accounts, activate student Catcards, provide student transcripts, administer and provide the student health benefits, and manage the many support services UVM provides to all students. I guess it‘s fitting that we’re here to help you celebrate your achievements.

All of us are part of this caring community that encourages each of you to succeed in your chosen majors. We are a community that supports creation, inspiration, and innovation.

So I urge you to send us an update now and again. We don’t stop caring at the end of your senior year, or at the completion of your advanced degree. We look forward to when you’ll look back over your shoulder and give us a “shout out” of your accomplishments. So congratulations, graduates. We are proud of you, and we will miss you.

Last modified January 22 2012 09:27 AM

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