University of North Florida. Division of Academic Affairs. Commencement Records.
Collection — Container: UA1973-2
Scope and Contents
The Commencement Records consist of printed materials, memorabilia, and regalia dating from the University's first commencement (June 10, 1973) to the most recent commencement. The files include the addresses and remarks of commencement speakers, commencement announcements and invitations, memoranda relating to commencement planning and organization, programs, and scripts of ceremonies. At least two copies of each commencement program is held in each file. Memorabilia and regalia include the first ceremonial mace, caps and tassels from early commencements, and a graduation gown worn by a student at the charter class commencement ceremony on June 12, 1974. Copies of commencement addresses and speeches are available for many years. Speakers have included Florida legislators, government and educational leaders, and other distinguished individuals who have made significant contributions to society and/or outstanding achievements in their respective fields. From 1981 to 1995, the University's Distinguished Professor annual award recipient delivered the commencement address at the Summer commencement ceremony. From 1998-2004, the President of the University and the Deans of the Colleges delivered the majority of the Summer commencement addresses. Thereafter, instead of one major address, brief greetings and presentations were delivered by selected individuals, including remarks by Provost Mark E. Workman. From 2004, John A. Delaney, President of the University, presided over each ceremony. A number of speakers and honorees received honorary doctorate degrees at the following commencement ceremonies: Elliot L. Richardson (Doctor of Laws, June 11, 1979) John E. Mathews, Jr. (Doctor of Humane Letters, May 7, 1983) Not present due to illness. Samuel A. Grimes (Doctor of Science, May 5, 1984) Ira M. Koger (Doctor of Humane Letters, May 4, 1985) William V. Chappell, Jr. (Doctor of Laws, May 2, 1987) James H. Webb, Jr. (Doctor of Letters, April 30, 1988) Frederick H. Schultz (Doctor of Letters, May 6, 1989) J. J. Daniel (Doctor of Letters, August 5, 1989) Charles E. Bennett (Doctor of Letters, December 14, 1990) Billy Taylor (Doctor of Humane Letters, May 1, 1992) Stetson Kennedy (Doctor of Humane Letters, August 5, 1994) William Halamandaris (Doctor of Humane Letters, May 5, 1995) J. Brooks Brown, M.D. (Doctor of Humane Letters, December 10, 1999) Elaine L. Konigsburg (Doctor of Humane Letters, May 4, 2001) Yank D. Coble, Jr., M.D. (Doctor of Humane Letters, May 2, 2003) Dave Brubeck (Doctor of Humane Letters, February 11, 2005) Presented at a UNF music concert. Archbishop Desmond M. Tutu (Doctor of Humane Letters, November 12, 2005) Presented at a special UNF event. His Excellency, Sir Colville N. Young (Doctor of Humane Letters, April 28, 2006) Edith A. Perez, M.D. (Doctor of Humane Letters, August 4, 2006) Anna M. Pearce (Patty Duke) Doctor of Humane Letters, December 14, 2007. From 1975 to 1981, commencement ceremonies were held at the end of Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall quarters. Beginning with the 1982 Spring semester, commencement ceremonies are held at the end of Spring, Summer and Fall semesters. Commencement venues have included various locations, both on and off campus, through the years. The first two commencements (June 10, 1973 and August 26, 1973) were held in the University Courtyard. On June 12, 1974, due to the lack of a large university facility, the ceremony was moved to the Jacksonville Civic Auditorium. The August 23, 1974, ceremony was held in a new outdoor venue - the campus quadrangle at the intersection of Buildings 3 and 4. From 1975-1993, the University Green and Auditorium, Sandalwood Senior High School Auditorium, Morocco Shrine Temple Auditorium, Jacksonville Civic Auditorium, and the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Coliseum served as locations. From 1993 to date, the ceremony has found a permanent home in the University of North Florida Arena. Photographs and videos of many of the commencement ceremonies are available for viewing in University Archives. In addition, a University Archives website (http://www.unf.edu/library/sc/milestonesunfgraduations.html) features printed materials, photographs and streaming video from the first commencements in 1973-1974.
- Other: Date acquired: 00/00/1973
- University of North Florida. (Organization)
Conditions Governing Access
The collection is open for research.
Conditions Governing Use
Permission to photograph, publish, quote or reproduce items must be secured from the repository and the copyright holder. The reproduction of materials is subject to the discretion of the Library. Materials may be restricted by donor limitations, our compliance with copyright law, and the condition of the materials.
Biographical or Historical Information
In 1986, the University of North Florida (UNF) Dept. of Language and Literature began offering a variety of courses in Irish literature, which generated high student enrollments and community interest. Literature Professor Richard Bizot, a charter member of the Dept., was the catalyst and longtime coordinator of Irish Studies at UNF. In addition to designing and teaching courses on Irish fiction, poetry, and drama, he conducted literary tours of Ireland in 1986, 1987, 1990 and 1992, for university students and members of the community. In 1991, Bizot was instrumental in bringing Irish poet John Montague to UNF for the first Irish Studies event on campus. In March 1995, a formal Irish Studies Program was initiated through the generosity of the Schultz Foundation, a Jacksonville, Florida, family foundation. UNF was the recipient of funding from the Foundation in the memory of John Francis Reilly, the Irish-born father of Nancy Reilly Schultz. The Foundation supported Irish Studies at UNF for ten years, and underwrote both the John Francis Reilly Performance and Lecture Series and the Reilly Fellowship program. A UNF Irish Studies Committee supervised the Series; initial members were Richard Bizot (chair), Dale Clifford, Betty Flinchum, Charles Galloway and Debra Murphy. The Reilly Performance and Lecture Series presented 101 public events from its inception in Fall 1995 until Fall 2008. Irish poet and educator Seamus Deane presented the Inaugural Series Lecture, "Irish Studies: Rereading a Culture," on November 9, 1995. Other Reilly Series events included poetry readings, concerts, lectures, film series, exhibits and symposia. The Reilly Fellowships for curriculum development were awarded to eleven UNF faculty members who developed a variety of Irish Studies courses in art, film, Celtic spirituality, education, history, literature, nursing, political science and sociology. As a result, UNF faculty and students have presented scholarly papers at many Irish Studies conferences in the United States and Ireland. In totality, the Irish Studies Program raised more than $100,000 in contributions to the UNF Foundation, establishing one endowment - the Moriarty Endowment, named after Professor Bizot's mother's family, and more than $100,000 in in-kind contributions. In November 2008, due to budgetary constraints, most of the operations of the Irish Studies Program were suspended by the University until further notice. The last major event held was a Samuel Beckett Festival, featuring a trilogy of world-class events on October 30 - November 6, 2008.
Note written by
Note written by
The Commencement Records consist of printed materials, memorabilia, and regalia dating from the University's first commencement (June 10, 1973) to the most recent commencement. The files include the addresses and remarks of commencement speakers, commencement announcements and invitations, memoranda relating to commencement planning and organization, programs, and scripts of ceremonies. At least two copies of each commencement program is held in each file. Memorabilia and regalia include the first ceremonial mace, caps and tassels from early commencements, and a graduation gown worn by a student at the charter class commencement ceremony on June 12, 1974.
Arranged by series; chronological within folders.
Source of Acquisition
The majority of materials were transferred to the University Archives from the Division of Academic Affairs. Additional items were donated from various campus offices, and University alumni
Method of Acquisition
The materials were acquired by UNF Library Special Collections and University Archives on 00/00/1973.
- University of North Florida. Division of Academic Affairs. Commencement Records.
- Collection Description/Finding Aid prepared by Eileen D. Brady.
- Description rules
- Language of description