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Changes for Cal State LA Commencement

Improvements in Store for 2018 Commencement Ceremony.

Cal+State+LA+graduates+at+Commencement+on+the+Jesse+Owens+Track+in+May%2C+which+is+the+season+of+high+temperatures.+
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Changes for Cal State LA Commencement

Cal State LA graduates at Commencement on the Jesse Owens Track in May, which is the season of high temperatures.

Cal State LA graduates at Commencement on the Jesse Owens Track in May, which is the season of high temperatures.

J. Emilio Flores

Cal State LA graduates at Commencement on the Jesse Owens Track in May, which is the season of high temperatures.

J. Emilio Flores

J. Emilio Flores

Cal State LA graduates at Commencement on the Jesse Owens Track in May, which is the season of high temperatures.

Anthony Karambelas, Staff Reporter

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Recently, the term “don’t sweat it” has taken on a new meaning. Throughout California, temperatures have been increasing, especially during the summer. For those exposed to the outdoors, it can begin to feel unbearable. Unfortunately, this was the case for attendees of the 2017 commencement ceremony, where the heat reached such extremes that it became a safety hazard.

The three days of commencement last year saw unusually high temperatures. The first day of graduation, May 20, saw temperatures as hot as 94 degrees. The subsequent days settled in temperature, but still remained in the 80s.

The heat at Commencement was a serious issue because of the heat-related illnesses  associated with prolonged exposure. When the air warms up, human bodies naturally work to cool themselves, causing more blood to rush to the skin surface. This means less blood flowing to the brain and muscles, leading to potential mental incapacity and physical harm.

James Cuaresma, Commencement and University Events Manager, stated that Cal State LA’s standby emergency medical team responded to about 30 calls and even had to transport some people to medical facilities.

As a result of this, authorities on campus have taken action to ensure that this does not occur again. As of Commencement 2018, graduation ceremonies will no longer be held outdoors. In a recent memo to all faculty and staff, President Covino announced an ambitious design to hold all fourteen graduation ceremonies within the University Gymnasium:

“As we plan for 2018, we have made some changes to the event to create a safer environment for our students and their families. In consultation with the Executive Committee of the Academic Senate and the Honors Convocation and Commencement Committee, we have agreed to hold the ceremonies indoors in the University Gymnasium.”

Considering that we can only expect hotter summers from here on out, this appears a wise decision.

Scientific climate model trends indicate that average air temperatures will continue to rise in California. Data from AccuWeather shows that since 1947 (Cal State LA’s founding), May heat has risen dramatically. For perspective, the maximum heat recorded on May 20, 1947 was 75 degrees.

Hopefully, this new logistical improvement will make graduating a bit more comfortable.

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8 Comments

8 Responses to “Changes for Cal State LA Commencement”

  1. Eduardo rojas on November 1st, 2017 11:27 pm

    Why not place tents for shade that cover the bleachers rather than indoors. Its been a tradition to graduate in the field like our previous alumni and it saddens me to not follow that golden eagle tradition.

  2. Yolo on November 7th, 2017 6:46 pm

    Because csula is broke AF to offord tents

  3. Priscilla Dinh on November 2nd, 2017 12:53 am

    If graduation is going to take place in the gym, it needs to be remodeled. It is so so so small and dated!!!!!!!!!! I will transfer before having to graduate in there.

  4. Kelly cervantes on November 2nd, 2017 9:21 am

    I do not agree with this change! I will be graduating in May and I have always imagined my commencemnet ceremony to be outdoors like many universities.

  5. Jocelyn Morales on November 2nd, 2017 11:21 am

    I don’t believe this is such a good idea unless the ceremonies are split up even smaller throughout more days so the graduates families can still go without there being less tickets involved.

  6. Irene Campana on December 5th, 2017 3:28 am

    I don’t mind graduation being in the gym as long as it’s split up to smaller groups and I can get extra tickets because I got a big family. Please please please hear my plead.

  7. Lena Becerra on November 6th, 2017 8:22 pm

    I was there last May. You don’t understand how miserable the heat was. The gym would’ve been a dream compared to that. I was worried my parents were going to pass out. They are not young. Kudos to the school. I wish they had done this a year sooner.

  8. Anonymous on January 21st, 2018 9:58 am

    I just saw this and I have to concede that I have a large immediate family that is expecting to attend. My high school graduation was held at at entirely different venue and the school gym was at least three times as big as Cal State LA’s! Also, CSULA’s bleachers don’t even go high or have enough seats to support that many families:/ Is there any way that they can just rent a space somewhere nicer— if they want it indoors??

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