University updates Commencement security protocol
Observer Staff Report | Monday, May 9, 2016
The University announced updated security measures for this weekend’s 171st Commencement Ceremony due to the attendance of Vice President Joe Biden and former Speaker of the House John Boehner, who will be jointly receiving the Laetare Medal during the ceremony.
According to a press release, the procession of the graduates will begin at 9 a.m., but guests are encouraged to arrive earlier due to expected delays. Every guest will be required to pass through “airport-style security checkpoints operated by U.S. Secret Service personnel,” beginning at 7 a.m. at Gates A and C.
“Attendees are encouraged to check carefully their belongings before entering the security checkpoint lines,” the press release stated. “Storage will not be provided for items prohibited for admission, meaning prohibited items must be discarded or returned to a personal vehicle. Water and other beverages will be available for purchase at stadium concession stands.”
Items such as umbrellas, purses or bags larger than 12 by 12 by 12 inches, personal seatbacks, backpacks, signs or banners, unopened packages or gifts of any kind, containers of any type including bottles, cans or thermoses, coolers, grocery bags, tote bags and duffels will all be banned, according to the release. A complete list of banned items can be found on the Commencement website.
If severe weather becomes an issue, the release stated the University will make the decision to move the ceremony indoors by 10:30 p.m. Saturday night.
“This decision will be broadly communicated via the NDAlert system, through local news outlets, email messages, online at commencement.nd.edu and on University social media accounts,” according to the press release.
Guests of the graduates will need to obtain a “severe weather” ticket, as general admissions tickets will not be honored if the ceremony is held inside.