Thursday, June 08, 2006

A formality...

Originally uploaded by FlorenceChee.
Yesterday was my grad ceremony for the Master's I defended last November. A little anti-climactic, I thought -- a whole bunch of hassle, a weird hat... I'm technically done the first year of my PhD program:P....BUT-- when all was said and done I could see why ceremonies were important. Humans seem to 'need' formal (public) rites of passage in order to ratify things. Think of important ceremonies like weddings, funerals, swearing in ceremonies, etc. For weddings, the people in the relationship love each other but the ceremony helps the family and friends come to terms with the union. Funerals are similar in function. And, people KNOW who won the election but things like this make it 'official.'
I found the vocabulary used during the ceremony interesting. It's so far removed from the academic administration that we're put through the whole time. Even though we had technically earned our degrees already, the PhDs in front of me having been "Dr." for quite some time already, this ceremony BESTOWED THE DEGREE UPON US... in front of the world(live via webcast).
Anyhoo, it was nice being piped in. I likes the bag pipes. I just want the puffy hat next time.


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