Commencement 2018

It is a celebration of your academic and personal success – a day to reflect on all you’ve accomplished and on the person you hope to become in the years ahead. This page provides graduates, families, and friends the information they need leading up to the May 12th graduation event. We will post any needed updates about Commencement and related Commencement events here, so please visit this page often.

Your Commencement Details

Graduates Alt

Master's & Bachelor's Candidates

Master’s and bachelor’s candidates please arrive at the MassMutual Center in downtown Springfield at 7:00 a.m. and join your classmates in Exhibition Hall A. Enter on the Main Street side of the building and follow the signs.

Graduate Details
Female Student in Regalia with Doctoral Hood in Hand

Doctoral Candidates

The 2018 Doctoral Hooding Ceremony will take place at 2 p.m. at the Esther B. Griswold Theatre after the main campus Commencement. Doctoral candidates should arrive at Courniotes Hall
Room 112 at 1 p.m.

Doctoral Hooding Ceremony Details

 

Parents, Family, and Friends Alt

Parents, Family, and Friends

Invite as much of your family and as many of your friends as you would like. The more the merrier! Follow our guides to ensure everyone makes it to commencement without any issues.

Guest Details
Live Stream

Live Stream

American International College will be live streaming our 2018 Commencement ceremonies. Click the link below to go directly to the event’s YouTube page.

Live Stream
Faculty Regalia

Faculty Regalia

Faculty can order the finest regalia at Oakhalli.com. In order to have regalia for academic awards, the order must be placed by Friday, March 23rd. Faculty can still order regalia for Commencement until April 3rd.

Commencement Speaker and Honorary Degree Recipients

Commencement Speaker and Honorary Degree Recipients

Darnell Williams

AIC alumnus Darnell Williams ’79 will deliver the 2018 Commencement address. Mr. Williams will receive an honorary Doctor of Laws degree, awarded for outstanding achievement in the social sciences and for significant community contributions at the local and national levels.

Williams, president and CEO of the Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts, has made a lifelong commitment to equality and the creation of educational, professional, and personal growth opportunities for African Americans and other minority populations. He has made raising awareness and cultivating solutions to challenges facing communities of color and low-income families his life’s work.

Graduates

Please login to the Commencement page on myAIC for the most up to date overview of what steps you’ll need to take before graduation. Please read each of the steps outlined carefully to ensure that you do not overlook any required.

Commencement Participation Policy
Students who elect to participate in American International College (AIC) Commencement ceremonies are advised that, in order to wear Commencement regalia and accept a diploma cover on stage as part of the class processional, the student must be in good standing and within six (6) credits of completing all degree requirements. Students within this six-credit window must obtain written permission to participate from the Office of Academic Affairs. You can contact the Office at 413.205.3449.

Exceptions to this policy may be granted to students in such programs as MEd, MBA, OT, and those others that are not scheduled to be completed until after the official Commencement exercises. In consideration of these students, the president has granted approval for those who are in programs scheduled to be completed by the end of summer to participate in the May 12, 2018, Commencement Ceremony, even though they may still have outstanding course requirements to complete.

Exit Survey

All graduating students are expected to complete the mandatory online graduate Exit Survey. A link to the survey will be sent to your AIC email account in mid-April. Completion of this survey is necessary in order to ensure that your name stays on the commencement list. All students who have received federal loans should visit the Financial Aid Office to complete an Exit Interview as well.

How do I order my cap and gown (regalia) for graduation?
Students: When you fill out the graduation application you will be given the chance to go directly to the link for ordering your cap and gown. If you need to revisit that link after filling out the graduation application you can go there directly at https://aic.shopoakhalli.com/purchasewizard/Welcome

As you officially receive your degree, we wish you future success and growth. If you have questions not addressed on this page, please call the Office of Academic Affairs at 413.205.3449.

Please note: Degree certificates will not be given out at the May 12th Commencement Ceremony. AIC will mail all degrees at a later date.

Master’s & Bachelor’s Ceremony

All graduates are encouraged to arrive at the MassMutual Center in downtown Springfield when doors open at 7:00 a.m. and join their classmates in Exhibition Hall A. Enter on the Main Street side of the building and follow the signs. There will be signs to identify where each school and degree group should line up. Put on your academic regalia (cap, gown, and tassel) and find your place in line. If you have a hood, please carry it over your arm.

  • All purses, cameras, and other items should be left with your family or guests. These items tend to create disruptions, so please do not bring them into the Commencement Ceremony.
  • Alcoholic beverages of any kind are strictly prohibited. Drinking of alcoholic beverages before or during Commencement is not permitted.
  • Balloons (including helium balloons) and beach balls are not permitted inside the MassMutual Center. Such items will be confiscated before being allowed entry into the building.

For more information regarding the ceremony, please click on the items below.

Is there a rehearsal for Commencement?

There is no rehearsal for the Commencement Ceremony. Please arrive at the MassMutual Center at 7 AM and go to Exhibition Hall A. You will receive all necessary information there.

Is there a dress code for the ceremony?

Business casual dress is required for all participants in the Commencement ceremonies. Commencement is the most dignified and solemn activity of the entire academic year. Therefore, you are expected to act with decorum and in such a way as to reflect well upon the College, as well as your family.

Is there transportation to the ceremony?

Yes. Three major events are happening at the MassMutual Center on the day of Commencement, so AIC will be providing buses to bring students to the ceremony. Loading will take place at Edgewood at a time to be announced. The bus leaves promptly and will return after Commencement. Students are encouraged to take the bus to save time and money on parking.

What happens at the ceremony?

The faculty marshals will start the procession promptly at 9 a.m. NOTE: Once the procession begins, no late arrivals will be permitted to join the line.

Follow the person in front of you. If you are in the proper place in line, the marshals will see to it that you are put in the proper seat and that you eventually arrive at the stage when your name is called.

After reaching your seat, please remain standing until after the invocation. Watch the platform party; remove and replace your caps when they do. Then, on instruction from the stage, please be seated. Follow the program so that you will know when to play your part.

Honorary degrees will be conferred first, with the last recipient remaining at the podium to deliver the Commencement Address.

When do I go on stage?

During the Main Campus Ceremony at Mass Mutual, the Executive Vice President of Academic Affairs (EVPAA) will step to the podium to present all candidates. She will ask ALL candidates to rise and remain standing while the President of American International College, Dr. Vincent M. Maniaci, confers your degree en masse. You will then officially have your degree. On instruction from the stage, please be seated.

The class valedictorian and salutatorian will be called forward to be recognized for their individual achievements. They will then return to their seats. Each degree group will be introduced by the EVPAA. The EVPAA will step to the podium and say, “Will the candidates for the degree of (the name of your degree) please rise and come forward.” Each degree group will be led by a marshal. Follow the person in front of you.

Hold back at the top of the stage ramp until your name is called. Then, walk briskly to President Maniaci, who will shake your right hand.  Proceed across the stage to receive your folder from the Registrar.  Exit stage, return to your seat and remain standing. On signal from the faculty marshal, please be seated.

After all degrees are handed out a benediction will be offered followed by the recessional. Graduates will leave the ceremony and go to Exhibition Hall A. Family and friends may meet you there.

During the Doctoral Ceremony, your name will be announced. You will then proceed to the center of the stage to greet your Dean and faculty member. You will turn to the audience and the hood will be placed over your head. You will then shake their hands and receive your diploma folder from the Registrar as you walk off stage.

When will I get my diploma?

Diplomas will be mailed 4–6 weeks after graduation.

How long is the ceremony?

The ceremony will last approximately two and half hours. All graduates are expected to remain in their seats throughout the ceremonies and proceed to the exhibition hall with their classmates at the end of the event.

Parents, Family, and Friends

Parent’s, family and friends are encouraged to arrive at the MassMutual Center when the general public doors open at 8 a.m. Please use the following guide as you make plans to attend Commencement on May 12th. (Click on each of the items below for more information.) If you have additional questions, please call the Office of Academic Affairs at 413.205.3449.

MassMutual Center Directions

The MassMutual Center is located in Springfield’s Downtown section, minutes from hotels, bus and train stations. Patrons should enter the MassMutual Center at the entrance on the corner of Dwight Street and Bruce Landon Way.
From the East
Exit the Mass. Turnpike at Springfield Exit #6. After the toll booth, turn left on to 291 (South). Leave 291 at Exit 2B (Dwight Street). Turn left on Dwight Street to the MassMutual Center parking garage, a few blocks away.
From the West
Take the Mass. Turnpike to West Springfield Exit #4 and follow the signs to Route 291 (South). Leave 291 at Exit 2B (Dwight Street). Turn left on Dwight Street to the MassMutual Center parking garage, a few blocks away.
From the South
Follow Route 91 N to Exit 4, Springfield Center. Leave 91 at Exit 4, Springfield Center (stay in right lane off exit). Follow East Columbus Avenue to Court Street. Take right on Court Street to MassMutual Center parking garage, a few blocks away.
From the North
Follow Route 91 S to Exit 7, Columbus Avenue. At second set of lights, take left onto State Street to MassMutual Center parking garage, a few blocks away.

From Bradley Airport

Take Route 20 East to Route 91. Follow Route 91 N to Exit 4, Springfield Center. Leave 91 at Exit 4, Springfield Center (stay in right lane off exit). Follow East Columbus Avenue to Court Street. Take right on Court Street to MassMutual Center parking garage, a few blocks away.

Parking

Parking is available at the MassMutual Center garage, as well as at other parking lots near the MassMutual Center.

For more information, please visit the Springfield Parking Authority website.

Special Accommodations

If you or your guest(s) require special accommodations for the Commencement Ceremony, such as a sign language interpreter, please complete and submit the Commencement 2018- Accommodation Request Form two weeks prior to the Commencement Ceremony.

If you have any questions, please contact Patty Scagliarini at 413.205.3264 or patricia.scagliarini@aic.edu.

Amplified headsets or a sign-language interpreter can be provided. Your request for these services must be received at least two weeks prior to the event to allow us time to make the arrangements.

MassMutual Center Accessibility

The MassMutual Center provides access for our guests with disabilities in the following ways:

  • Easy access for wheelchair users on the four corners of the building and to the main Arena and Convention Center entrances; thresholds are level with door entrances.
  • All public building entrances on Bruce Landon Way have at least one motorized door, accessed via a large push button. Access to the elevator is at this entrance.
  • The MassMutual Center has a parking garage located directly across from the building with accessible parking on all levels. The MassMutual Center also offers convenient drop-off and pick-up areas for guests, taxis, and limousines located along Bruce Landon Way.
  • The Arena is equipped with passenger elevators with Braille writing on all elevators and room information placards. The MassMutual Center has approximately 35 spaces on the inner concourse, and another 35 spaces on the upper level, reserved for persons with disability. As this event is open to the general public, no ticket required, these spaces cannot be reserved in advance and are on a first-come, first-serve basis. Seating in those areas is limited to the person with the disability plus one member of their party.
  • Space for wheelchair seating on the Arena floor may be requested in advance. A limited number of wheelchairs are available for use by our guests. Upon arrival, please proceed to the Security Command Post to check out a wheelchair. A valid ID must be presented and held in order to use a wheelchair for the event. Please contact the office of the Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs at 413-205-3449 at least two weeks prior to the event to arrange Arena floor seating.
  • All facility restrooms are equipped with at least one stall designated for patrons with disabilities. At least one hand dryer in each bathroom is at a height which will accommodate persons in wheelchairs.
  • The MassMutual Center welcomes ADA patrons who need the assistance of a service animal. The MassMutual Center staff may inquire whether the dog is a service animal. All other animals are prohibited (with the exception of miniature horses that have been trained as service animals). Guests using a service animal will be responsible for the animal’s care and supervision when present at the MassMutual Center.
  • Emergency exits are clearly marked throughout the facility and a public loudspeaker can be activated in the event of an emergency.
Lodging

AIC has made special arrangements with several hotels in the area to ensure you get discounted rates when you visit us. Be sure you mention that you wish to receive the AIC rate when making your reservation. View our list of local accommodations.

Inviting Foreign Guests to Commencement

Many American International College students request the presence of foreign family members for commencement. To visit the United States, family members must obtain the appropriate visa. In order to support the issuance of the visa, the College will provide verification that the student is anticipated to graduate.

There are two separate request processes that depend on your citizenship. Use the appropriate process outlined below:

Domestic students requesting foreign guests:

Visit the Office of the Registrar in Lee Hall to request verification of the anticipated graduation.

You will receive:

  1. A notarized letter verifying your upcoming graduation
  2. A template that can be used as additional support

F-1 visa students requesting foreign guests:

Contact Lesley LaMarche in the Office for International Student Life to request verification of the anticipated graduation.

You will receive:

  1. A notarized letter verifying your upcoming graduation
  2. A template you can use as additional support
  3. A letter from the International Student Advisor verifying F-1 student status.

In either scenario, please contact the appropriate office as soon as possible. Since your relatives must appear in person at a United States Embassy or Consulate in the nation where they reside, it is best to have your documentation to them as far in advance as possible.

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