Convocate: to cause to assemble in a meeting;

I have been pondering the value of attending my convocation ceremony. This coming together isn’t terribly exciting. It will entail long hours of standing in hot sticky flowing garments, and fear that either my shoe will fall off, or I’ll trip, or something awful will happen when I walk across the platform. Further, I am 20 years older than the rest of my colleagues. This gives me a feeling of being displaced, odd, OLD! The only real positive is the refreshments at the reception after the ceremony. So, why is it that I am going to attend?

I am going because people say it is important closure…for me, this is only one step towards where I want to go…so, perhaps I’m resisting closure.

I am going because I want to support those who have spent time organizing the event. But, if everyone stopped going, wouldn’t they stop holding such events?

What is it about assembling together that is important to society? Isn’t it really part of the narrative about who we are, now that we are graduates, and what our role and responsibility is towards society? We don’t leave the university as individuals, we leave as an assembly–a society, a new community.

That is why I am going to assemble together with colleagues (albeit 20 years younger).


2 thoughts on “Convocate: to cause to assemble in a meeting;

  1. I felt exactly the same about my PhD ceremony – I was the only person there with a husband and a toddler and a loud voice in my head said I’d be better off at home. However, I did go, and my parents were pleased, and I do have the memory of that closure you describe. So many congratulations on having made it to this point and have a wonderful day.

  2. Thanks litlove. I really just want to get through today. I am surprised, really, by how awkward I feel about going to the ceremony. So, I engage in self-talk: you should feel proud yadayadayada.

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