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April 18, 2023
     Daylight: 15:32:33 


Wow! We are down to just two weeks of classes remaining! For everyone at UAF, students, staff, and faculty, the finish line of the spring 2023 semester is fast approaching. We are all so excited to celebrate the end of the term and the beginning of summer!

This is the point in the race where you can practically see the finish line. It is so close! Keep up your good work. Keep the pace and finish strong!  

For some of you, this finish line will mean much more than the end of a single semester. All your work, years and years of work and invested time and money, has paid off and you are about to finish! Graduation is at hand and we are all so excited to celebrate your truly remarkable achievement. You have likely worked more than a thousand days; you have put in thousands of hours, hundreds of nights and weekends, and all to achieve this important milestone. You will complete your program and earn your degree, certificate, or credential. Amazing! 

Last weekend, I attended the UAF Lavender Graduation Ceremony put on by the Nanook Diversity and Action Center at the Wood Center on the Troth Yeddha’ Campus. It was beautiful. This is a graduation ceremony celebrating the achievements and accomplishments of our LGBTQIA2+ students. I am so proud of each and every one of the graduates who were celebrated. Students received rainbow honor cords and pins for wearing to UAF Commencement on May 6. Alaska House Representative Ashley Carrick gave an eloquent and thoughtful keynote speech about her own journey through UAF and onward to the State House to represent District 35. The warmth and compassion in the room were palpable; I was grateful to be invited and I felt proud to work for UAF and proud to play whatever small role I can in helping our students reach their goals and helping to make UAF a place of belonging. 

This event was just one of many celebrations that we have coming up in this season of finish-line festivities! These events for smaller groups are often more personal than the full commencement celebration. Graduation is a momentous milestone  and celebrating it with close friends and familiar colleagues is often more meaningful. This spring, we have:

CTC Trailblazer Recognition Ceremony: April 25
First Generation Cording Ceremony: April 29
Kuskokwim Campus Commencement: May 2
Honors College Graduation Ceremony: May 4
Honorary Degree and Award Recipients: May 5
Grad Bash: May 5
Commencement Ceremony: May 6
Army ROTC Commissioning Ceremony: May 6
Northwest Campus Commencement: May 11
Chukchi Campus Commencement: May 12

If this spring is not yet your final lap, please join me in celebrating the achievements of your fellow travelers! Nobody completes a challenge of this magnitude completely on their own and everyone benefits from the support and encouragement we share. Whether you are running alongside, on the sidelines, or serving as a support crew, it is time to celebrate! It is such a great time to be a part of UAF and to be awestruck by the significance and triumph of each student's journey. Go ‘Nooks! 

Things to do: 

Register for summer and fall classes! 
Do your future self a favor and sign up for classes. This is like putting away the firewood for next winter. Don’t wait! Financial aid may be available as well. Check-in with a financial aid advisor to find out more. 

Also, if you register on or before May 5, 2023 (for 9+ credits for undergrad students and 6+ credits for graduate students), you'll be entered in the great registration prize giveaway. Talk with your advisor to find out more! 

Get a summer job at UAF: 
All UAF Student jobs can be found online. Work on campus. Make some money. Take a class. Enjoy UAF in the summer! 

Take care of yourself:
I heard there were some negative comments on a Facebook post about our Lavender Graduation Ceremony. For all our students, I suggest you leave the naysayers on the sidelines and keep moving ahead. Care for, support, and celebrate your fellow travelers. We are nearly there and we are excited to celebrate you! You are darn amazing! 

Is there a celebratory graduation gathering we should add? Let me know by emailing me at obguthrie@alaska.edu.

— Owen Guthrie, vice chancellor for student affairs and enrollment management


UAF is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer, educational institution and provider and prohibits illegal discrimination against any individual: www.alaska.edu/nondiscrimination/.