CSULB 2022 Graduation Petition
CSULB 2022 Graduation Petition
On January 20, 2022 CSULB announced that the 2022 Commencement Ceremony will take place at Angel Stadium of Anaheim. Each college will have their own ceremony, but there will be no individual recognition for each student. The graduates will not walk the stage and they will not hear their names announced like they typically would at a traditional commencement ceremony. Instead, the university is proposing “Graduate Recognition Stages” and personalized slides, which many have confused as being the same as having the opportunity to walk the main stage- but it is not the same. These Graduate Recognition Stages are significantly smaller in size than a traditional stage, and are accompanied by a large screen in the backdrop. These tiny stages will be placed outside the stadium in a parking lot and will only be accessible for use before and after the ceremony, not during. Graduates and their families are invited to line up to use these smaller stages, where they can scan a QR code to generate their personalized slide on the screen; the graduate will then walk across the stage while an automated voice announces their name. By signing this petition we are requesting that the university reconsider this format and instead use the formats and customs typically practiced at a traditional commencement ceremony, such as a main stage for all students to cross as well as an official announcer to call out each student's name.
We agree that there need to be measures in place to protect the public from COVID-19. We understand that, while the State of California has relaxed their restrictions on outdoor “mega events” and no longer enforces a capacity limitation, the university is rightfully concerned about crowd sizing and social distancing. For that reason, although not ideal, we understand the need to have the ceremony at Angel Stadium. What we do not understand nor accept (and what the university has thus far failed to explain), is why the university will not allow its graduating students to cross the main stage inside the stadium while their names are announced. The university has also failed to specify how many tickets will be allotted per graduate. In the past, the university has granted only two tickets per graduate; given that Angel Stadium can hold 45,050 people we request that the university allow six to ten guests (tickets) per graduate.
Many CSU campuses, as well as other local universities across LA and Orange counties, have recently announced that their commencement ceremonies for 2022 will allow graduates to cross a main stage while their individual names are announced during the event. We ask that CSULB also uphold these traditional practices and celebrations for their 2021 and 2022 graduating classes.
Below is a specific list of our requests:
1. Allow graduates to cross the stage during the ceremony.
2. Announce each graduate's name while they cross the stage inside the stadium.
3. Allow for six to ten tickets per graduate.
Below is a list of ideas the university can take into consideration while preparing for the updated ceremony:
1. Shorten executive speeches to allow time for the announcement of each graduate's name as they cross the stage.
2. Request each attendee to provide proof of vaccination or a negative test result prior to entering the stadium, as well as require each guest to wear a mask and practice social distancing during the ceremony.
3. Add a fourth day to the commencement ceremonies to allow each college more time for their speeches, announcements, and other cultural or honorary celebrations.
Arguments for our requests:
1. The State of California no longer enforces a specific capacity limitation for outdoor events; instead, they recommend that masks be worn, and that attendees of “mega events” should provide proof of vaccination or a negative test result prior to accessing the event area.
2. CSU San Diego, Dominguez Hills, and Fullerton graduates are each holding traditional commencement ceremonies on their respective campuses; CSULB is the only CSU campus that refuses students the opportunity to cross the main stage or have their names announced during the ceremony.
3. Anaheim City COVID-19 guidelines recommend that outdoor events of more than 10,000 people should require proof of vaccination or a negative test from each attendee, but does not specify a limit for the number of people per event.
4. While CSULB officials have cited health and safety concerns to justify capacity limitations, changes in venue, and stage restrictions, they continue to host athletic competitions and sporting events both indoors in the Pyramid and outdoors on campus. We believe that this is an unfair contradiction.
*Although the Change.org website offers you an opportunity to donate to the cause, we are not collecting monetary donations at this time; instead, we ask you to please sign and help share our petition with others.