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Fall undergraduate commencement and graduate hooding ceremonies will be held next week.

Graduate hooding will take place at 7 p.m. on Thursday, December 8, and undergraduate commencement will take place at 4 p.m. on Friday, December 9. Both events will be held in Thompson-Boling Arena.

The university will award 1,136 undergraduate degrees, 661 graduate degrees, and six law degrees. Also during the undergraduate ceremony ROTC cadets will be commissioned.

For more information about the ceremonies, visit the commencement website.

Undergraduate Commencement

UT Alumnus Jim Herbert, CEO of Neogen Corp. Speaker for the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources Spring Commencement 2016.
UT Alumnus Jim Herbert, CEO of Neogen Corp. Speaker for the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources Spring Commencement 2016.

James L. Herbert, CEO of the Neogen Corporation, will receive an Honorary Doctor of Science in Agriculture from the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources. He will also address the graduates.

Originally from Memphis, Herbert is a global expert in business development and animal science. He earned his bachelor’s degree in agriculture from UT in 1962. In 1982, he helped found Neogen Corporation, which focuses on the development, manufacturing, and marketing of products for food and animal safety. Neogen has been repeatedly named to Forbes Magazine’s list of the Best Small Companies in America and was chosen by NASDAQ as a Global Select Market company.

Herbert has been named Michigan Entrepreneur of the Year by USA Today and NASDAQ. He sits on the Greater Lansing Chamber of Commerce board of directors, is the governor’s appointee to the board of directors of the Michigan Strategic Fund, and is a director of numerous other civic organizations. He also serves on the UT Foundation board of directors.


Graduate Hooding

Chisa Huffman

Chisa Huffman, who is receiving her master’s degree in nursing, will speak at the graduate hooding ceremony where master’s, Specialist in Education, and doctoral degrees will be conferred.

Huffman has been selected as the first-ever Nurse Executive Leadership Resident with the Hospital Corporation of America, an organization that represents more than 200 hospitals in the United States  She will work with HCA’s senior leadership in building a residency program to help shape nursing leadership well into the future.


Parking and Security

Graduates and their guests may park free in university student parking areas throughout the campus but should avoid parking in staff parking areas.

The arena’s large-event security protocol will be enforced at both ceremonies. Guests may enter the arena with one clear plastic bag no larger than 12 inches by 6 inches by 12 inches.

The only other items ALLOWED in the arena are:

  • Small clutch purses no larger than 4.5 inches by 6.5 inches
  • Mobile phones
  • Binoculars, cameras, and video cameras (without cases)
  • Diapers and non-medically necessary items for babies and young children (must be carried in a clear bag)
  • Medically necessary items that must be carried in a specific bag, sized proportionately to its contents.
  • Umbrella strollers


The following items are PROHIBITED inside the arena:

  • Non-clear bags of any size
  • Diaper bags
  • Backpacks (of any size)
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Cans, bottles, coolers
  • Outside food, snacks, beverages
  • Open umbrellas
  • Selfie sticks
  • Unmanned aircraft
  • Large bags or parcels, including backpacks and purses
  • Weapons, including pocket knives
  • Hoverboards
  • Segways
  • Artificial noisemakers
  • Large travel strollers

Smoking, including e-cigarettes, is prohibited inside the arena at all times.

For more information on the security policy, contact the Thompson-Boling Arena management office at 865-974-0953.

Amy Blakely (865-974-5034,