June 2, 2006
Vol. 36, Issue 10
Back Issues
Finals 2006
Finance OKs $1.97B budget
Caplins give $4M
McIntire No. 2 in nation
Inventor of the Year
Headlines @ U.Va.
Simply Outstanding
Scenes from a graduation
First job fair info session ‘overwhelming success’
22nd annual telethon set for June 3 and 4
Sign up now for Day of Caring

Peer Support


Scenes from a graduation
Memorable moments define the day

Written by Brendan Mathews
Photographs by Dan Addison and Jack Looney

Tim KaineIn his commencement address to the Class of 2006 on May 21, Gov. Tim Kaine admitted that he couldn’t remember any of the graduation speeches he had witnessed. “I was the speaker at one of my graduations — my high school graduation,”he confessed. “And I can’t even remember what I said.”

Instead, Kaine pointed to the small moments that he still carries with him from those days — the snapshots that seem to capture something larger than the moments themselves: a longremembered hug from the girlfriend who dumped him before senior prom, the unabashed hug that one of his friends gave to his parents after the ceremony.

Attendees at Final Exercises saw plenty of snapshots being taken: both the kind taken with a camera, and the kind that flash suddenly into the mind. Long after the words spoken from the podium fade from memory, both kinds of snapshots will remain, reminding graduates, family members, friends and others of the Class of 2006’s last day on Grounds. What follows are a selection of these snapshots from Finals Weekend; moments that will live in
memory and provide a sense of the atmosphere on Grounds during the ceremonies that President John T. Casteen III rightly called“ the University of Virginia’s most joyful occasion.”

• Two graduates, their mortarboards adorned with colored tape proclaiming them“ Triple ’Hoos” and listing the dates of their bachelor’s, master’s and finally, Ph.D’s. “We’ve been here a long time,” said one, as they raced toward the Lawn.

• A parent asked an Information Booth attendant, “How much are the programs?” The answer: “If you’ve got a graduate in there, you’ve already paid for it.”

• A family of five crossed McCormick Road near the West Range, each wearing a brilliantly colored robe — the traditional attire of the Yoruba of Nigeria.

Closer to the chapel, a father, a graduate and two teenage sons walked together along the red brick sidewalk, each wearing khaki pants, navy blazers and colorful bow ties — the traditional attire of the Virginia gentlemen.

•A graduate, his black robe flapping slightly in the breeze, black hair welling out around the sides of his cap, stopped at an information booth, fresh from walking the Lawn.“ I have a question for you,” he said to the attendant. “Where do I get a job?”

“You must be an English major,” the attendant said.

The graduate nodded. “I can write brochures for you,” he said.

“Press releases.”

• Items reported missing included:
• One cell phone,
• One camera,
• One pocketbook,
• Two tassels and
• Four adults from a family of 12.

“I was leading the way and then I turned around and four were gone,” said the young man who came to the chapel information booth seeking help locating his wayward family members.

• Army National Guardsman Michael Egan walked the Lawn — two years after he had planned on graduating. Egan shipped out to Iraq in March 2004— two months before he was scheduled to graduate from the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences — and served until February 2005, during which time his company was the target of the December 2004 “chow hall” bombing. Egan completed his double major in electrical and aerospace engineering in December, and now works for a satellite manufacturer in northern Virginia.

• The University’s “V” decals, handed out by the hundreds at the information booths, were a hit among the under-14 set as well as those old enough to drive. “Hey, Mom! I’ve got a sticker,” said one boy. “Can I get a car now?”


This year marked a milestone for the Bachelor of Independent Studies program at the School for Continuing and Professional Studies. The BIS degree program, whose first class graduated in 2002, saw its 100th graduate walk across the stage this year – followed by the 101st, 102nd, 103rd and on until the 112th. In all, 27 people earned a degree through BIS, including five University employees.

The BIS program is targeted at adult students and offers evening classes year-round in Charlottesville. Concentrations are offered in business, humanities and social sciences, in addition to an education track that leads to teacher licensure in Virginia. SCPS celebrated more than the success of its bachelor’s program. This year, the school awarded 244 master’s degrees, 34 education specialist degrees
and nine doctorates in education.

• Rector of the Board of Visitors Thomas F. Farrell II received a raucous response during his introduction of Gov. Kaine. When he said that Kaine had long advocated “higher teacher pay,” graduates of the Curry School of Education exploded in cheers. When Farrell later observed that one of the governor’s “endearing eccentricities” was his support for Virginia Tech’s football team, the graduates were united in boos and hisses.

• As President Casteen awarded degrees to the graduates of the School of Medicine, the graduating class from the School of Nursing rose and gave the green-and-black robed M.D.s a boisterous standing ovation. The doctors returned the compliment later in the ceremony when bachelor’s and master’s degrees were awarded to the nurses.

• If there had been an applause-meter on the Lawn, the winners would have been:

• The McIntire School of Commerce grads, famous for the volume and duration of their cheers

• Recipients of bachelor’s degrees from the College of Arts& Sciences, who proved that there is strength in numbers

• President Casteen’s mention of 16-year-old master’s degree recipient Greg Smith, whose age first drew a gasp, then loud applause from the graduates.

• There were many fine words spoken from the podium during Finals: Tom Wolfe’s Valedictory remark, on May 20, that now was the “perfect time to make a huge difference in such a confused and, I would say, chaotic universe”; Gov. Kaine’s charge to embrace “the simple and enduring beauty of adventure, discovery and surprise”; President Casteen’s recognition of the diversity of talents and activities that marked the Class of 2006. These words may live in memory, but the one unforgettable sight from Finals may be the joyful riot of colors on a brilliant Sunday morning: a dazzling blue sky over the Lawn; the gleam of balloons — whether seahorses, margarita glasses, pink flamingos or Clifford the Big Red Dog; the greens, reds and yellows of the kente cloth stoles that adorned the robes of African-American graduates; and tassels, hoods and regalia in every shade, representing the rainbow of academic disciplines and scholarly pursuits that have inspired the Class of 2006.

Charlotte Crystal,Brevy Cannon and Matt Kelly contributed to this report.

Lifelong Learning: U.Va. Pays the Way

For hundreds of U.Va. employees who have pursued academic degrees while working full-time, graduation marks a major step forward– and perhaps a little more free time in the months ahead.

The University offers a variety of ways for faculty and staff to continue their education, chief among them the Tuition Waiver and Tuition Reimbursement and Assitance programs.The Tuition Waiver program allows eligible employees to enroll in one U.Va. course per semester free of charge, and the course does not have to be job-related.

Under the Tuition Reimbursement/Assistance program, departments reimburse eligible employees for job-related education and training, either after the course is completed (reimbursement) or before (assistance). Employees can take up to 11 undergraduate or eight graduate credits per semester, at either U.Va. or another accredited institution. Medical Center employees use a different program.

In 2005, 199 classified staff, 74 faculty and 164 Medical Center employees benefited from the Tuition Waiver program, while 378 classified staff and
21 faculty took advantage of reimbursements and assistance. The Class of 2006 includes recipients of associate’s, MBA’s, bachelor’s and master’s of nursing, doctorates and a range of other degrees and certifications.

“ The fact that U.Va. pays for its employees to take classes to better themselves is a testimony to the commitment that the University has to the community and its employees,” said Michael Payne, a Facilites Management
employee who recently earned his associate’s degree from Piedmont Virginia
Community College.“Everyone should take advantage of this.”

More information about employee educational benefits is available at: www.hrs.virginia.edu/educben

Finals By the Numbers

Behind the pomp and ceremony of Finals is a veritable army of U.Va. employees who expend thousands of hours making sure that the most
minute details are attended to:

Staffing: Prior to Finals, approximately 40 full-time Facilities Management employees worked around the Grounds to ensure that the Lawn and other
areas were in impeccable condition. About two weeks prior to the event, between 80 and 100 facilities staff members engaged in additional preparations for the event.

Chairs: Approximately 45,000 chairs, at 50 sites, including 20,000 on the Lawn, were set up for Finals Weekend.

Stages: Workers installed 12 stages of various sizes around Grounds and furnished them with podiums, tables, stairs, ramps or lifts, skirting, rails and
sound systems.

Food: At food stands around Grounds, U.Va. Catering planned to serve

• 17,000 petite gourmet
• 4,000 bakeshop cookies
• 400 gallons of lemonade
• 200 gallons of iced tea
• 4,000 bottles of water
• 400 pounds of pineapple
• 400 pounds of cantaloupe
• 400 pounds of honeydew
• 400 pounds of strawberries

Sound and Video: Sound systems were provided for more than 30 U.Va. venues, and for this first time, Finals was broadcast live to two massive screens on the Lawn, to allow parents and other guests a better view
of the proceedings.

More facts and figures are available at: www.virginia.edu/topnews/releases2006/20060519commencement_numbers.


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of the University of Virginia

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