Q: When is registration and payment due? 

A: Registration is due by 8:00 PM on the deadline given. The date changes from year to year but it is usually around early-mid April. Payment for any sashes is also due by 8:00 PM NO Exceptions! (Spring 2021 deadline is: Thursday, April 15, 2020@ 8:00 p.m.)

Q: What is the purpose of the Cultural Graduate Celebrations?

A: These celebrations honor the importance of breaking barriers within higher education for historically underrepresented and/or traditionally marginalized groups. They also affirm the different expereinces and paths that lead to academic success. 

Q: Who may participate? 

A: Any SMC student who is eligible to participate in undergraduate or graduate Commencement, OR any student in their last year at Saint Mary's as a engineering major may participate in any of the Cultural Graduate Celebrations. Students should also check with the Registrar to confirm that they are on track to graduate and have submitted all necessary paperwork. Participating students are not required to identify as API, Black, Latinx, or LGBTQIA+ and may identify as an ally of one of these groups. 

Q: What is the difference between a Cultural Graduate Celebration and the campus-wide Commencement?

A: Cultual Graduate Celebrations are simply that- celebrations. There is no degree conferred nor do they replace Commencement. They are similar to the celebrations sponsored by other programs or departments on campus that do something special at the end of the academic year to honor the graduating students. 

Q: Is there a cost?

A: There is no cost to participate; however, there is a cost if students would like to purchase a kente cloth or sash.

Q: What if we want to order a kente cloth or sash but not participate? 

A: Only students participating in one of the Cultural Graduate Celebrations may order a kente cloth or sash through the Intercultural Center. Participants will receive a discount through the Intercultural Center's vendor. Non-participants may directly order their own kente cloths or sashes from a vendor at full-price. 

Q: When will I receive my kente cloth or sash?

A: Kente cloths and sashes will be given out at the particular celebration(s) that the graduate is participating in.

Q: How many people may I invite to the ceremony?

A: There is no limit on the number of people you may invite, but seating, food, and drinks will be on a first-come-first-served basis. It is your responsibility to invite individuals to this event. 

Q: Will there be a rehearsal? 

A: No, there will not be a rehearsal. 

Q: When and where should my kente cloth/sash presenter(s) and I arrive? 

A: Please arrive with your kente cloth/sash no later than 30 minutes prior to the scheduled start time. Students who arrive late will not be allowed to participate. It is your responsibility to notify your presenters of when and where to arrive. 

Q: What should we do when we arrive?

 A: With the other participants, please line up in alphabetical order by last name. Kente cloth/sash presenters should form a second line next to their respective student participant. An IC staff member will assist in the process. 

Q: What should I wear? 

A: API: Business casual (no cap and gown). Black: All Black and business causal (no cap and gown). Latinx: Gowns over business casual (no cap). Lavender: Business casual (no cap and gown). 

Q: Will my kente cloth/sash presenter(s) sit next to me during the ceremony?

A: No, student participants will sit in front of the room facing the audience, whereas kente cloth/sash presenters will have reserved seats in the audience. An IC staff member will direct people. 

Q: Will I have an opportunity to speak publicly during the ceremony? 

A: All participants will have an opportunity to speak publicly for one minute or less except in the Latinx Graduate Celebration and API Graduate Celebrtation. These participants will only have 30 seconds due to the large number of participants. This time is an opportunity to thank family and friends as well as share personal challenges and triumphs in college. A bell will ring at the end of yout time limit to help you be courteous to others. 

Q: Will my sash presenter(s) have an opportunity to speak publicly? 

A: It is a Saint Mary's tradition for sash presenters at the Lavender Graduate Celebration to speak publicly for thirty seconds. This is not the case for the other celebrations. 

Q: Will food or beverages be served?

A: Appetizers and/or desserts along with non-alcoholic beverages will be served at each reception. Alcohol is not allowed at any of the celebrations.