UAlbany Announces Commencement
Catherine Herman (518) 437-4980
Karl Luntta (518) 265-4114 cell
Michael Parker (518) 265-3910 cell
Media Note >>
ALBANY, N.Y. (May 10, 2005) -- The University
at Albany will hold its Commencement Weekend
2005, which includes a formal graduate commencement
ceremony on May 14, the main undergraduate
degree conferral ceremony on May 15, and departmental
and school recognition ceremonies throughout
the weekend. An estimated 2,500 students are
expected to participate in the 161st commencement
ceremonies including 1,800 undergraduate and
700 graduate candidates.
The undergraduate degree
conferral ceremony will take place on Sunday, May 15, at 10 a.m.
on the New Library lawn, uptown campus. UAlbany
President Kermit Hall will deliver the address.
Hall will also give the graduate
commencement address, which will be held at the uptown campus
Recreation and Convocation Center (RACC) on
Saturday, May 14, at 9 a.m.
The undergraduates will receive degrees in
50 different majors, including Information
Science and Policy, Business, Biology, Communication,
Economics, English, Criminal Justice, Political
Science, Psychology and Sociology. There are
20 military veterans in the Class of 2005.
UAlbany’s undergraduate class hails from 43 foreign
countries including China, Japan, Cyprus and Ghana, as well as 19 states of the
union. About 90 undergraduates participated in the Presidential Scholars program,
which recognizes and nurtures students with distinguished high school academic
records. The average cumulative GPA for the undergraduate class is 3.1; seven
students are graduating with a perfect 4.0. Slightly more than half - 53 percent
- of the Class of 2005 are women.
On Saturday afternoon (May 14) a family picnic
will be held on the Podium. UAlbany’s
Commencement Weekend also includes Torch Night (May 14 at 8:30 p.m. on the Podium,
uptown campus), a traditional ceremony in which the senior class “hands
the torch” to the junior class, along with a fireworks display.
The commencement weekend coincides with Hall’s first 100 days in office.
During this time Hall has set undergraduate education, academic success, community
involvement and fundraising for scholarships as primary goals for the University.
In one of his first initiatives, he created the Inaugural Scholarship Fund, seeded
with money that would have been spent on the presidential inauguration. Hall
also announced plans to refocus the goals and direction of UAlbany’s capital
campaign to place an increased emphasis on student success.
Observing a need to increase the visibility
and accessibility of the President to students,
Hall immediately established an office on the
uptown campus academic podium and initiated several forums to receive
feedback and information. He regularly walks the podium, meeting and
greeting students and faculty, listening to their issues and concerns.
His “Voice of the Customer” initiative and the “Ask
the President” button the President’s web page are designed to find
out how well the institution is delivering a quality academic and campus experience. “Guaranteeing
a quality undergraduate experience is a top priority for UAlbany,” said
Hall. “The best people to tell us how we're doing are our students and
Hall also met with members of the neighborhoods
that surround the downtown campus. “It
is vital to the success of this University and the people it serves to discuss
where we stand as neighbors, where we intend to be in the future, and, most important,
how we're going to get there,” President Hall said.
The president led the school through a major
overhaul of its annual Fountain Day celebration.
The event was moved from a weekday to a weekend
to avoid disruption of classes. New protocols
were undertaken to ensure a safe and fun event,
including additional activities, food and prizes. “Fountain Day 2005” was attended
by more than 6,300 students, faculty and staff, and was hailed as a universal
success, raising the bar for school spirit at UAlbany. Hall also published a
new book, The Oxford Companion to the Supreme
Court of the United States, which
Amazon.com mentions “is sure to become the standard in the field.”
For more information on departmental recognition
ceremonies and other commencement activities,
All commencement activities will take place,
rain or shine, as scheduled. In the event of
severe weather (lightning, high winds), an
announcement will be posted on the Web site
and the Commencement Info Line (518) 442-5310, noting any cancellations.
NOTE: At the undergraduate
degree conferral ceremony on
May 15, media will have assisted access to
a balcony located in the New Library that
overlooks the stage and seating area. In
addition, a platform will be roped off for
media who wish to set up tripods, etc. to
the right of the stage facing the New Library.
Parking will be available.
At the graduate
ceremony on May 14, media
will have access to most areas of the Recreation
and Convocation Center (RACC). An area near
the stage will be roped off for those who
wish to set up tripods, etc. Parking will be
available via the RACC bus turnaround - plan
to see the UPD officer stationed at the entrance.
Contact Karl Luntta at (518) 265-4114 (cell)
if you need assistance.