Stadium renovation requires adjustment to May commencement schedule

BLACKSBURG, Va., Jan. 21, 2005 – The starting times of Virginia Tech commencement ceremonies set for Friday, May 13, will be changed this year to compensate for the unavailability of stadium lights at Lane Stadium. The installation of new stadium lighting, part of the current Lane Stadium renovation project, will not be completed by the end of the semester.

According to Ed Henneke, associate dean for research and graduate studies in the College of Engineering and chair of the University Commencement Committee, the University Commencement Ceremony held in Lane Stadium will begin this year at 6 p.m., 90 minutes earlier than the previously scheduled 7:30 p.m.

Other events scheduled for May 13 include: The Graduate School Commencement Ceremony at 1:30 p.m., originally scheduled for 3 p.m., in Cassell Coliseum; The Corps of Cadets Graduation Ceremony will begin at 11 a.m., originally scheduled for 1 p.m., in the Donaldson Brown Hotel and Conference Center; The Army ROTC Commissioning Ceremony will be held at 1 p.m., originally scheduled for 3 p.m., in Donaldson Brown; And the Navy ROTC Commissioning Ceremony will be held at 2 p.m., originally scheduled for 3:30 p.m., in Colonial Hall, Squires Student Center.

"Due to the construction schedule of the Lane Stadium renovation project, the installation of new lights to illuminate Worsham Field will not be completed by May 13," said Henneke. "To ensure the safety of our graduates, and their families and guests, we moved the University Ceremony earlier in the day so it will be concluded long before it gets dark."

A complete schedule of college and departmental ceremonies to be held on Saturday, May 14, will be announced at a later date. Virginia Tech's National Capital Region campuses will hold its commencement ceremonies at 3 p.m. Sunday, May 15, at the George Mason University Center for the Arts.

Each May, approximately 5,000 Virginia Tech undergraduate, graduate, and professional students complete their degree requirements and participate in commencement ceremonies. Approximately 15,000 to 20,000 family members and guests travel to Blacksburg to join graduating students.

For more information on Virginia Tech spring commencement activities, call the Commencement Hotline at (540) 231-3208 or visit the commencement website at