Cold, damp weather and construction projects combined to cancel commencement exercises at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Saturday.
University of Nebraska officials had planned to hold commencement ceremonies at Memorial Stadium, which would have been a first. The university normally holds commencement ceremonies at the Bob Davaney Sports Center, but it is under renovation for Cornhusker volleyball next year. Pinnacle Bank Arena, the new home for Husker basketball and likely future commencement ceremonies, is under construction in downtown Lincoln.
University officials made the decision early Saturday morning as light rain fell in Lincoln with temperatures in the lower 20s and winds blowing at around 30 miles per hour. The forecast promised no better weather for the 9:30am start of the ceremonies.
“Every reasonable attempt was made to hold commencement ceremonies. Our first concern is for the safety, comfort and convenience of our graduates and guests,” Chancellor Harvey Perlman said in a written statement released by the university.
UNL had 1,700 graduates this year and, with the cancellation of ceremonies at Memorial Stadium, graduates picked up their diplomas at the Hawks Championship Center, the indoor practice field for Cornhusker football.
Graduates received their diplomas by their college deans and associate deans. Students were photographed in their gaps and gowns.