Graduation: I’ve Been Putting on My (Thinking) Cap

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Graduation: I’ve Been Putting on My (Thinking) Cap

Caroline Morgan, Writer

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Graduation.

Certain themes come to mind when that word is uttered. A new path, severing ties, senior pictures, baby pictures, and the classic gown and cap. These two pieces of clothing symbolize celebration and completion of eighteen years of education. We have watched our siblings decorating their caps and move their tassel to the other side to show their accomplishment. The smile that is formed in that moment is unforgettable.

Here at Bancroft, there is a different tradition: a white dress/pant suit for the girls and blazers for the boys. Though this pristine look may be the defined way to symbolize graduation, many have started to question it. The idea of never experiencing what we have seen on TV/movies for years or at other grad’s ceremonies makes some feel empty. Tradition may be key in this topic, but we should explore the other side of the argument before continuing on in this debate.

The first gray area is gender expression. Some students have already communicated to administration about this, so modification to the dress code has been made so that all feel comfortable to express themselves. However, the gowns and caps eliminate labelling all together. Bancroft blue could be the color of the gowns and caps to remove the white and blue categorization seen in pictures. To keep to tradition, the white and blue theme dress code can remain under these gowns to stick with tradition and start something new.

Second, there is the cost of these gowns. The idea of renting a cap seems expensive since we are one of the biggest classes on campus. According to Grad Shop, gradshop.com, 20-99 royal blue caps, gowns, and tassels is $22.95, similar to the cost of Mountain Day long sleeves. Since we pay for our own shirts affiliated with a school event, graduation should be treated the same. Each student would rent their own regalia, creating less of a strain for the administration.

Finally, the last (and common) concern is tradition. Many have been waiting four, six, ten, even thirteen years to participate in the white and blue theme. That is what distinguishes us as a school. However, what is being suggested is not to eliminate the tradition all together, but to meet in the middle. The Bancroft graduation ceremony can still have the formal for our class and family pictures. To compromise, we would wear the gowns and caps during the ceremony and/or pictures with family, but take them off for the traditional school picture.

Tradition should not stand in the way on this school campus. Hearing conversations in the hub, the classroom, and the lunchroom, I have noticed that this has been a topic of interest for the Class of 2018. However, the school’s reputation of communication between staff and students is what makes Bancroft unique. By respectfully following the steps set in place to form a discussion with administration, our class may start a new tradition or we may not. Life is not just one tradition. It is something borrowed and something new. The best part about this school is learning how to be an outstanding member of a community, so by having this opportunity to discuss this issue is something we should be grateful for.

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