Memorial University has recently made some changes to its convocation ceremony.
This resulted in attention both in the traditional media and on social media.
As many know, Memorial’s primary audience for convocation is our diverse and multicultural student body who are there to celebrate their achievements.
Over the last few years, convocation at Memorial has been evolving to become more inclusive and accessible.
Some of these changes include revisions to the order of ceremonies; setting up a different stage layout to enhance accessibility for participants; engaging our students and guests with more modern and upbeat musical performances by a wider variety of performers from different cultures and musical backgrounds; and the addition of handing scrolls to students on stage to replace hooding, which brought with it accessibility challenges.
Our student body is made up of people of many different faiths, cultures, places of origin and backgrounds.
Work continues to balance important traditions and the changes happening in our world.
Not using the Ode to Newfoundland at convocation was not welcome news for everyone.
However, Memorial University remains dedicated to its special obligation to Newfoundland and Labrador and to ensuring we continue to be more inclusive of this place and reflective of our multicultural community.
We will still celebrate our province’s traditions, and this includes singing the Ode to Newfoundland for other ceremonies such as the Ceremony of Remembrance.