The ceremony, featuring an official dedication of the new facility, begins at 10 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 21. SMU trustee and business Ray L. Hunt will deliver the commencement address.
“One of the greatest joys of University life is Commencement, when we celebrate the achievement and potential of our new graduates,” said SMU President R. Gerald Turner. “This year represents another milestone in that our December graduates are the first to receive their degrees in the newly renovated and expanded Moody Coliseum. We are honored to share this special memory with them, as we wish them the best in the next phase of their journey.”
Doors to the staging area in the Dedman Center for Lifetime Sports open at 8:30 a.m. Processional groups begin forming at 9:15 a.m. The commencement ceremony will be livestreamed at the SMU Registrar’s December Commencement homepage beginning at 9:50 a.m.
December Commencement is a formal ceremony open to degree candidates from all of SMU’s schools and professional programs. All participants must wear academic regalia; however, honor ribbons, medals, flowers, decorated mortarboards or other adornments may not be worn during the ceremony. Students without regalia will be directed to the SMU Bookstore to rent a cap and gown. Decorated and ruined mortarboards must be replaced at the student’s expense.
Hunt, the commencement speaker, is the CEO of Hunt Consolidated Inc. and chair of Hunt Consolidated Energy and Hunt Investments. He graduated from SMU in 1965 with a B.A. in economics; he was a University Scholar and received the Outstanding Business Student Award. A member of the SMU Board of Trustees since 1976, he was board chair from 1987 to 1992. He currently serves as a co-chair of SMU’s Second Century Campaign and sits on the Advisory Board of the Maguire Energy Institute. His support for SMU includes establishing in 1993 the Hunt Leadership Scholars program with his wife, Nancy Ann Hunt, a 1965 SMU graduate.
Ray Hunt was a member of the steering committee that directed SMU’s successful bid for the George W. Bush Presidential Center. He currently serves on the Board of Advisors of the Bush Institute and as a member of the Bush Presidential Foundation. His civic leadership has included service as chair of the Dallas Citizens Council, chair of the North Texas Commission and chair of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
SMU has honored Hunt with its Distinguished Alumni Award and the Cox School of Business Distinguished Alumni Award. Ray and Nancy Ann Hunt, together, received SMU’s Foundation for the Future Award and the J. Erik Jonsson Ethics Award, which is presented annually by SMU’s Maguire Ethics Center. Hunt has been inducted into the Dallas and Texas Business Halls of Fame and has received the Distinguished Business Leader Award from the Texas Association of Business. Among his civic awards are the Linz Award from The Dallas Morning News, the H. Neil Mallon Award from the Dallas Council on World Affairs, and the Sprague Community Service Award from the Southwestern Medical Foundation.
The ceremony lasts about two hours. No guest tickets are required, and free parking will be available throughout the campus.