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University explains Commencement ceremony location change

| Thursday, October 9, 2014

Following a Wednesday email from the Office of the Registrar with information on ticketing for the 2015 Commencement Ceremony in the Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center, Notre Dame Vice President for Public Affairs and Communications Paul Browne elaborated on the decision to relocate the ceremony from the stadium.

He acknowledged that “some seniors are understandably disappointed that commencement must be moved from the stadium.”

“When all is said and done, the forthcoming Campus Crossroads Project will be a tremendously positive addition to the Notre Dame campus – for scholarship and teaching, student services, the performing arts, athletics, hospitality, recreation and more,” he said in an email to The Observer on Thursday. “It is a big project and virtually everyone on campus will have to make sacrifice, be it an inconvenience associated with the large construction zone around the stadium, a reduction in some parking lots or limited access to the stadium.

“It is the latter factor that has led the University to relocate the 2015 Commencement ceremony from the stadium back to the Joyce Center, where it was held for four decades prior to 2009. We recognize and appreciate the sacrifice the current senior class will be making due to the limited number of tickets that will be available for the University Commencement Ceremony.”

The Registrar’s email said undergraduate students will be able to obtain three guest tickets for the May 17 ceremony. Students from the law school, graduate school or graduate business school who will be participating in the ceremony will have access to one guest ticket and can enter a lottery for a second.

Guests without tickets will be able to watch the ceremony live from the Joyce Center North Dome, DeBartolo Hall and Jordan Hall, and the event will be streamed live on the web, the email stated.

Browne said it would not be practical to discontinue Campus Crossroads construction for Commencement weekend.

“The closure of the stadium from the end of November until next August is necessary because there will be no safe way to enter the facility due to the placement of massive cranes and other equipment needed to erect the structural frames of the west and east building,” he said. “In other words, the four main gates will be inaccessible. The cranes will be gone and pavement in place by the time of next football season. Construction, however, will, in fact, continue next fall on the skins and interiors of the buildings.”

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