June 08, 2012 by Editorial Board
College graduation is a time of jubilation. After years of elementary school, middle school, high school, and finally four (or five) years of college, graduates can take pride in many things. The most memorable of those is having close friends and family watch them walk across that stage, shake hands with the administration and accept that diploma.
Push that thought out of your mind, Drexel students, because you now have to play the role of selection committee. That’s right, Drexel limits students to just four tickets for commencement, with the rest of their loved ones forced to gather at one of the famous “alternate viewing locations” around campus.
“Hey Grandma, I know you’ve waited 22 years to watch me walk in my cap and gown as a college grad, but you’ll have to settle for watching the ceremony on a projector across campus.”
Don’t worry, for there is a chance for students to earn a couple extra tickets. All they have to do is wake up at the crack of dawn and line up outside the Main Campus DragonCard office, which opens at 8 a.m., and hope for two additional tickets. Students from smaller schools like the Antoinette Westphal College of Media Arts & Design or the College of Information Systems and Technology (also known as The iSchool) have a good chance of landing those extra tickets. But for those students in the larger schools such as the LeBow College of Business or the College of Engineering, those tickets are not as much of a guarantee due to the higher numbers of graduates. And good luck tracking down a fellow graduate who is willing to give up tickets, but make sure that anyone who agrees to give you tickets is in the same commencement ceremony as you.
There are a few different possible solutions to this matter, but students would be hard-pressed to see Drexel swallow its pride and hold the ceremony off campus. The first and most obvious choice for an alternate location is Franklin Field, just a short walk down 33rd Street. Because it is a landmark of Philadelphia, Drexel would easily be able to manage the rental fees that the University of Pennsylvania and City of Philadelphia would charge.
Another more expensive option would be one of the professional sports arenas in South Philadelphia. New York University holds its commencement at Yankee Stadium year after year, and that likely costs that private university a pretty penny. So what’s to say Drexel couldn’t work something out with the Wells Fargo Center? Just an idea.
Anyway, we do not wish to take away any of the spotlight from those who have earned the right to receive their degrees. We offer a resounding congratulations to all of the soon-to-be graduates, but we would just like to offer you some food for thought.