Before I begin, I want to offer a shoutout and a huge congratulations to my colleague and classmate Eryl, for managing to procure a job in the television industry with CHCH News. She’s gonna rock it–expect big things!
And with that, here we go.
One week ago today (Wednesday) I completed my second of two convocations. Well whoopdee-doo for me.
The program I took in post-secondary—Media, Theory and Production—takes place both at Western University and Fanshawe College. Thus, I earned a diploma in broadcast journalism from Fanshawe, and a degree in Media and Integrated Technoculture at Western. Thus, two convocations. Kapeesh?
There was quite a bit of build-up to these ceremonies. Fanshawe was on June 19, and Western on June 20—this meant there was about two months between the time school ended, and the convocation. After seeing your classmates consistently for anywhere between eight months and four years, two months away is more than enough time to set the stage for an exciting reunion.
Fanshawe was up first, and thankfully it wasn’t until 2pm. I slept in and made the drive to London Tuesday morning. I first ran into some familiar faces—a stud and a towel, to be specific—in the lovely Outback Shack. It’d been a while since I’d seen the handsome fellas so of course some bro-grabs were in order. After that business was taken care of, we saluted the first-years who were also at the table—if I recall correctly, they were gazing at us with something between admiration and awe—and strutted out of the Shack.
We arrived at the rendezvous point just outside the gym a few minutes before the doors opened. Many small reunions took place, and hugs, hand-shakes and bro-grabs were being given out like candy at some sort of free-candy convention, or something.
The whole prep process was pretty straightforward—after running quickly through the alphabet in my head to determine which line to stand in, I got my sweet gown and then stood around for a bit. There was a screen displaying the process for the entire convocation in steps, but I only saw step one which was something like “enter gym”. I decided to wing it.
The ceremony actually went pretty quickly. It was cool where we were sitting, so that was nice too. Dana Lewis was our guest speaker, and although he talked a lot about potato recipes, his speech was a pretty good one. Afterwards, the grads got to walk across the stage and get their little scarf thing. The folks running the ceremony demanded no one make a sound—but we Fanshawe students, being the undisputed rebels we are, let out a smattering of applause at certain points, and even a whoop or two. Thankfully, none of our diplomas were withheld—at least, not once we returned our gowns. Yup, no pictures with gowns AND diplomas—we could only get our very expensive paper by handing the gowns back in.
After we all got our scarves (which we had to return also, by the way), we left the auditorium to tumultuous applause from the probably-very-bored people there. Then there was a nice little reception where we had some photo ops—here’s a good one of the folks and I:
And of course us MTPs had to get our group shot—we were honoured when Dr. Howard Rundle, President of Fanshawe, asked to be in the photo:
After returning the gown and getting my lovely diploma, I went back to my apartment and changed into shorts—thank god, it was pretty hot out. Then I drove over to Carey’s, where I got to enjoy a few beers and a sub-par burger with some of my attractive radio classmates. This of course led to a trip to one of their houses, where we engaged in a spirited bout of sitting on the couch sighing when the swivelling fan hit us, sipping on luke-warm beer.
After that lost its appeal, we set up a table and started into the beer pong. My towel friend Gibby and I were a dynamic duo, and pretty much destroyed anyone who dared challenge us. Our best feat, however, was winning a game in two turns—and the other team didn’t even sink one. For the record, because I’m sure they’ll gripe, I’m counting balls-back as the same turn. I hit a bounce shot while Gibby hit a free-throw, eliminating three cups and allowing us to get the balls back. Quick as a fox, I bounced it in again, eliminating two of the remaining three. So now, on the losing team’s first throw, they were down to one cup. They both missed their throws—not even close, if I recall—and on our second turn I drained my shot. Although they had six cups to aim at, neither opposing player managed to hit a redemption shot, and history was writ.
And yes, they should have had to go streaking. We could have made them. But in the end we let them off the hook.
A bit later we went back to my place for a few beers, and then went down to Molly’s to meet up with some other swell people. There were many interesting parts to our night, including a waitress who could recite the million beers on tap in a single breath; a woman who tried to pick up Gibby by telling him his tie wasn’t done up right; a forgotten ID (there’s always one); and a lost adventure in a park (I heard about this later). All in all a fabulous night—except for the fact that it was 3 before I got to bed, and I had to be up early for the Western side of things.
I won’t bore you with the details of this one, since it was pretty similar—I’ll just mention the differences. Western had three grads go up at once (thank god or it would have taken forever) and at one point they stopped the proceedings to yell at some lady who shouted “FINALLY” when some bitty got her hood. Oh, yeah, we had to kneel in front of some guy and get a hood placed around our head. No, we didn’t get to keep the hood.
After that ceremony, we all grabbed our degrees:
and us MTPs headed over to UC Hill to once again take our attractive group photos. Here’s one of many:
And of course I got one with Mom and Dad:
There were more but I only have so much room to post things, sheesh. The after-Western process involved getting some lemonade, a sweet bookmark, then returning the regalia (which is a fancy word for gown, apparently?) and heading home to take a nap.
That night a bunch of the MTPs and a few others went out for our own celly. This involved some beers (or wine) on Barney’s patio, followed by a night of getting our dance on at JBRs. To top it off? Street meat at the end of the night.
Unfortunately that street meat cost me my cab fare, so I made the 45-minute walk home. All tuckered out from my big days, I collapsed into sleep, the proud owner of a degree and diploma and a free tassel thing that came with my regalia.
At this point, I’ll say thanks to the people who made my post-secondary time a blast: all the ladies and gentlemen in the 2-year Fanshawe program, I only met you this year, but you guys were awesome. I formed some good friendships with you guys over the eight months we were together (sometimes 24/7 it seemed!) and I wish you all the best.
Of course, a special thanks to my MTP ladies: Mel, Caroline, Jenn, Becca, Jacquelyn, Tor, Eryl and Shauna. I’ve known you ladies since second year (even longer for Jac-attack) and you made my post-secondary stint quite a memorable one. I know I’ll run into at least some of you in the working world, and I can’t wait for it. Best of luck, and congrats to everyone!
And last but certainly not least, the biggest of all thank-yous to my mom and dad. It goes without saying that without their support–physically, mentally, emotionally, financially– I would never have made it this far.
On another note—I went to Canada’s Wonderland on Tuesday. The next post will be about that, and I’ll tell you this: it includes a list of children that deserved a good punching. Stay tuned, and follow me on Twitter: