Commence the crowd speculation

Last Saturday, the Sun-Star ran an article about changes to UC Merced’s commencement ceremony.


I got this response from another unhappy parent:

“I read in the Sun-Star that each graduate would be given 8 tickets for family.  Given there are 500 graduates, this accounts for 4,000 seats.  I assume the other 5,000 tickets are being given to the public, those interested in seeing Michelle Obama and who have little or no interest in the graduation itself.   The allotment of tickets my son will receive is only half of what we needed to invite immediate family members.   Graduates should receive the number of tickets necessary to meet their needs, and any remaining tickets released to the public.


This commencement is turning into a free community circus, rather than the family celebration it is intended to be.   It is a sad reflection on the university that political considerations have taken front stage during an event that cannot be recaptured for those excluded.

On a related note, the County Board of Supervisors is expected to approve a request for mutual aid and assistance to UC Merced for sheriff’s services on the day of commencement. “U.C. officials anticipate 25,000 people will attend the event, which has created the need for assistance   in several areas,” according to the board report. According to information from more than one source at UC Merced, the campus is printing but 9,000 tickets. I wonder which estimate is the most realistic.

What do you think? Are you planning to attend?