TAMIU Makes Move to LEC for Commencement

TAMIU Makes Move to LEC
for Commencement Exercises

Citing safety concerns and a commitment to providing the most comfortable graduation experience for graduates, their families and guests, Texas A&M International University (TAMIU) will move its Commencement Exercises to the Laredo Entertainment Center beginning this December.

TAMIU president Dr. Ray Keck said the decision is a logical resolution. He shared the news with TAMIU students via email and posting on the University’s dedicated Commencement web site.

“Since moving to our new home in September, 1995, graduation ceremonies have been our most lauded and widely attended events. The campus is of course extremely beautiful, and families are always excited to walk where their family member has studied.  Predictably, our numbers have swelled.

“Last May we reached numbers which severely taxed our infrastructure, inviting significant risks for those attending the ceremony. We’ve studied the matter and believe the LEC represents a logical resolution that more than adequately addresses safety, comfort, weather concerns, access and parking,” Dr. Keck explained.

Logic aside, Keck admitted the decision was bittersweet.

“I know that some are concerned that the beautiful expectation of sitting in front of our Sue and Radcliffe Killam Library, awaiting the moment to cross the stage, will not happen exactly as imagined.  I share that frustration, but am confident that all will conclude that safety for those attending graduation should be our greatest concern,” he noted.

In recent years, crowds at graduation have grown to over 5,000.  On average, each graduate has 11 family members and friends attending the ceremonies.  Last May 459 students graduated.  Advance projections for the December 15, 2007 Commencement indicate over 550 students will participate, creating a potential audience in excess of 6,000.

Keck said it was possible that the move to the LEC would not be permanent.

“For now, we are fortunate that the City of Laredo invested in the beautiful facility across the road … but in time, we may have an Events Center on campus. All things are possible,” he said.

For additional information on the University’s Commencement Exercises, visit the dedicated Commencement 101 site located at tamiu.edu/commencement

University office hours are from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday-Friday.

Journalists who need additional information or help with media requests and interviews should contact the Office of Public Relations, Marketing and Information Services at prmis@tamiu.edu