WKU anticipates largest December graduation

Katherine Wade

A record number of students will graduate at the 2010 Fall Commencement ceremony next weekend.

Registrar Freida Eggleton said that each December the number of graduates has increased over the past few years.

This year a total of 1,407 WKU students will receive degrees and certificates.

The graduate ceremony will begin at 5:30 p.m. on Dec. 17 at Diddle Arena, and the undergraduate ceremony will begin at 10 a.m. on Dec. 18 at Diddle Arena, according to the news section on WKU’s website.

Glasgow senior Evie Pierce will be one of the 1,407. A chemistry/pre-med major, Pierce said she was graduating in December because she started at WKU a semester late.

“I did a three-month internship in Morocco after graduating high school, and when I got back, it was too late to start that semester,” she said.

 Eggleton said the reason for this increase in graduates is a reflection of the increase in freshmen in the past four to six years. She said they started having a December commencement ceremony in 1995.

“The number of graduates was exceeding the space for the ceremony,” she said. “As the university continued to grow, we expanded the number of ceremonies.”

Eggleton said she expects the number of graduates to continue to increase as long as the enrollment continues to grow.

Pierce said she was glad to be graduating in December.

“It’s kind of nice to have a semester off before going off and getting ready to do my next thing,” she said.

Pierce plans to begin medical school in Fall 2011.

Eggleton said WKU officials try to make the December ceremony identical to the May ceremony so that every student will be allowed the same experience.

Nevil Speer, chair of the Graduate Council, and President Gary Ransdell will speak at this December’s ceremony.

Pierce said she was excited now that graduation is right around the corner.

“I’m ready to end this chapter of my life and start the next one,” she said.