Two is twice as nice; rise in graduates requires two ceremonies

graduates throwing caps

By MEGAN MINSHEW, Staff Reporter |

Amarillo College has announced it will hold two graduation ceremonies Friday, May 10, 2019, at the Amarillo Civic Center.

 “We will have a 3 p.m. ceremony for students completing a program within the health sciences or industry communities and a 7 p.m. ceremony for students completing a program within the business, CIS, creative arts, education, liberal arts, public service and STEM communities,” Diane Brice, director of enrollment services, said.

At last year’s graduation, students’ families and friends had a hard time getting into the arena for the ceremony, Brice said.

“We actually have a great problem, space.  We had to either begin issuing tickets for family and friends to attend the ceremony or find another way to accommodate those interested in supporting their graduate. The Amarillo College administration voted to move to two ceremonies,” she said.

College officials said the number of graduates is growing. “We have actually had an increase in graduates.  We also don’t want to limit the people who want to come to celebrate our graduates,” Wesley Condray-Wright, the director of communication and marketing, said. He said it is important to allow everyone a chance to celebrate at the commencement ceremonies. 

“I am excited we have found a way to accommodate those interested in supporting their family or friends in this accomplishment. We have many students who begin this journey, but not all are able to finish. Being able to celebrate with those who reach this milestone is definitely something we are excited about,” Brice said, adding that having two ceremonies has both advantages and disadvantages. “While having one ceremony would be my preference, it just is not something we can accomplish at this point.”

Condray-Wright said that the change to two ceremonies could present some initial challenges, but he is confident that officials can work out any bumps. “In the long run I think this is what is best for our students to really celebrate their achievements,” he said.

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