The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

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A happy commencement—each semester end

Twin brothers Robert (left) and Ricardo Placensia shake hands with fellow Verbum Dei High School graduates during a ceremony at the Cathedral of Our Lady of Angels in Los Angeles, June 6, 2013. (Don Bartletti/Los Angeles Times/MCT)

Getting through college is definitely no easy task. On average, it takes college students four to six years to graduate. With long semesters, never ending homework and a few cups of coffee, graduation couldn’t come fast enough.

A perfect reason for why graduation should be held at the end of every semester. Having graduation at the end of every semester can give students a sense of accomplishment and the right amount of encouragement heading into the working world.

Unfortunately, at CSUN, some students do not have the luxury of walking at graduation on the semester they graduate. The undergraduates, along with graduate students, spend a lot of money to attend CSUN. The average undergraduate student at CSUN spends $23,952 a year on tuition, but are still only given one graduating option—wait until springtime to walk.

After students have completed the graduation milestone, some may not want to come back to walk at graduation. I myself am graduating in the fall of 2015. After the semester ends, I hope to get a job and be on my way. Due to the fact that graduation is in the spring, I’ll have to come back just to walk. Simply annoying, for myself and my family.

When my semester ends, I want to celebrate with my family. Although I am able to do so, it won’t be the same because I’ll have to wait until spring to walk with other members of my class.

Other universities graduate during spring, fall, summer and in winter semesters. Schools like: Tennessee University and Alma Mater University. CSUN should follow in their footsteps.

Will students who graduate in the fall have a graduation party at the end of their semester? Or will they wait until commencement day? It’s a debate I struggle with as my graduation date comes near. Not only do students have to worry about the party but they also have to worry if they move. What if you’re a student, who graduates in fall, and lands the perfect job, out of state? Most probably wouldn’t come back. I know I wouldn’t. Those who do graduate in the fall may have already started their new lives, only to come back to walk across a stage.

Now, it is understandable that paying for a commencement ceremony every semester can be expensive. There is the arranging of graduation for the different colleges within the university, finding a speaker for the ceremonies and dealing with the parking situation, among many other things. I can see why it would be easier to just have the ceremony all at once. But then again, students are being shortchanged.

Every semester that students spend at school, it costs money and time. It costs money to attend a university and costs student’s time in their daily lives. Sure, having a graduation ceremony every semester may not seem ideal, but the university can find ways to make it work. Students help pay for commencement fees by applying for graduation, ordering caps and gowns and having a GradFest. This goes to show that nothing comes free, not even graduation.

Commencement should happen every semester because students should be proud of all that has been accomplished. We learned how to become experts in our fields of study, we dealt with stresses we didn’t think we would make it through, and we are on to the next stepping stone of life.

We made it past the school days and now it’s time to make our dreams a reality.
The later that students have to wait around for graduation, the less they will remember in their field of study. In fact, 36 percent of students have trouble retaining information they learned while in school. So, for the students that wait to start their lives after commencement—waiting an extra semester to walk can take crucial knowledge away from students, and ultimately result in less opportunities.

For those of us who have been at CSUN for four or more years and made it through— you’re definitely due for a celebration. Not everyone can say they attended college and graduated right on time. In fact, only 13 percent of students graduate CSUN within a four year period. If anything, this accomplishment shouldn’t only be celebrated with families and friends, but the university should recognize the accomplishment as well. However, the excitement and value of a ceremony may diminish for the students forced to wait.

Graduation is both scary and exciting. It doesn’t matter how long it takes, just as long as you get there. If CSUN incorporated a graduation every semester, more students can appreciate commencement when they’re supposed to.

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