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SPEA Grad Students Honor Fellow Certificate Recipients and Fall Graduates

By Patrick Drennan
On April 12, 2013

Graduate students of the School of Public and Environmental Affairs will be hosting a pot luck dinner on April 19 to recognize their fellow classmates receiving certificates at the end of this semester.

The organizers of the event, students of SPEA 504, Public Organization, and spearheaded by Jeffrey Allen, Kelly Coons, and Mary Jarret, conceived the idea to try and honor students when they realized that there was no means of recognition for anyone receiving a certificate. Students earning their degrees in May get the glory of walking at commencement and being recognized by the entire campus, while other students who achieve alternative academic successes aren't really mentioned at all. The students of SPEA 504 thought that all students earning any academic accomplishments should be recognized in some way for their achievements.

In order to obtain a certificate, you have to take five classes, or 15 credit hours in related coursework. It's not as rigorous to achieve as a four year degree, but Allen, Coons, Jarret, and their classmates felt that there needed to be some form of recognition for students who achieve those 15 credit hours.

The effort is not limited to certificate recipients, either. Similarly, Fall graduate students have no means of formal recognition either. Although they are allowed to walk with May graduates, they have no authentic celebration that offers the same exclusivity.

Although this year's dinner is in Spring, the organizers are working to make their hopefully annual dinner a Fall event to properly celebrate Fall grads as well.

The event is open to all SPEA graduate students, spring certificate and degree recipients, SPEA graduate faculty and professional staff, and will be held from 6:30 - 8:00PM in the Dunes Medical Plaza, SPEA training Room 2134. Because of campus regulations, it is encouraged that attendees bring a covered dish to share with their colleagues. All plate ware, cutlery, cups, and beverages will be provided.

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