By Dominique Mack
Final preparations for Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University’s spring commencement ceremonies on April 30 are in full swing.
Graduating students as well as the University’s commencement committee have been hard at work year round preparing for the big day.
Ra’Anna Pickens is one of the many students receiving a degree this spring. The Miami native and biology pre-med student says that she is excited about graduation and calls the entire experience “breathtaking.”
“I feel very overjoyed about being able to graduate from not only FAMU, but an HBCU – my experience here was like no other, Pickens said.”
Like many other potential graduates, Pickens has juggled every day school life while preparing for the big day. With graduation pictures, announcements, and finals on the horizon, the graduating senior says she would not have been able to do it all on her own, and thanks her family for their love and support.
“There were so many steps that had to be taken,” said Pickens. “Not only did I have to focus on school but my family and I had to ensure that everything was situated for graduation as well. A lot of hard work was put into this to make sure that I have a smooth graduation weekend. ”
This year’s spring commencement ceremonies will take place at FAMU’s Al Lawson Center. A total of 1,200 graduates will walk across the stage during the course of the 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. ceremonies.
More than 800 undergraduates will receive their bachelor’s degrees, and 400 more graduate students will receive their masters, and doctorate degrees, including recipients from the Colleges of Pharmacy and Law.
Angela Coleman, Ed.D, serves as the chairman of the commencement committee. She also serves at the associate vice president for Student Affairs, and calls the graduation season the “busiest, yet most gratifying.”
As chairman, Coleman is responsible for coordinating all logistics within the Lawson Center on the day of the ceremony, as well as ensuring that the graduation procession starts on time.
“I love hearing all the noise from the crowd’s cheers and applause as the graduates enter the building. This one moment truly makes all of the committee’s hard work worth doing, and it’s the reason we continue to volunteer each year,” Coleman said.
The commencement committee is comprised of representatives and volunteers from various departments and offices around campus. Coleman said the committee meets weekly and that final preparations are usually made six weeks prior to the date of commencement.
“For graduates, their family, friends, and those who played some part in their educational experience, commencement is truly a proud day, a day that will always be remembered as special,” Coleman said.
For more information visit www. famunews.com/event/spring-2016-commencement/