The graduation day is a long-awaited moment since childhood and an indelible memory we will never forget till our death. Dreams are the driving force of human existence. Getting a degree is one of those dreams of humans even from the formative school years. In the context of a nation such as Sri Lanka, where education is freely accessible, the pursuit of these dreams takes on added significance. Everyone tries to obtain a degree from a state university and there will be an intense rivalry to be selected to a government university. Therefore, securing a place in a state university becomes a formidable competition in itself.
However, getting selected to a university will never complete the dream in such a facile manner. Three or four years of university life may be the hardest era of someone’s life when a student has to survive with twenties crisis. Many students give up on university education as a result of having personal and financial issues. As such, the road to graduation will take a multitude of dedication, commitment and resilience even before and after getting selected to a university. Therefore, a graduation ceremony will be a tribute ceremony for those who have chosen to continue their academics despite facing a myriad of life challenges.
Finally, the graduation day arrived! One of the most glamorous events in the university calendar, the General Convocation of the University of Colombo was held at an elegant mansion in Colombo, Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall on the 5th and 6th of September 2023. At this most prestigious academic event, degrees were awarded to a total of 3151 students across a diverse spectrum of study disciplines. It reflects the diversity and breadth of academic programs offered by the university.
Even when almost one week has elapsed, the freshness and fragrance of that anticipated moment has not gone out from the memories. When graduation day was coming closer day by day, the true exhilaration and cheerfulness born couldn’t even be expressed in words. I believe it’s one of the most spectacular feelings ever had and it is an emotion akin to the euphoria a bride experiences on her wedding day. The morning of the graduation day went with a little bit of anxiety due to the usual excitement carried by special days in life. Three hours of prior arrival to the ceremony had been a ladder to experience the moment meaningfully with more friends. It allowed me invaluable time to capture moments with friends and families by creating lasting memories.
Another impressive moment in the glamorous convocation was seeing the giants in academics in red cloaks. I truly believe that their honorable presence should have been an inspiration to most hearts. Their presence is an inspirational force that resonates deeply with aspiring graduates. The dignity they exuded on the red carpet serves as a catalyst for future academic pursuits.
Graduation day is the end of university life and simultaneously it’s the commencement of real life where individuals must navigate financial constraints and lifelong ambitions. The experiences and lessons bestowed by the university become increasingly pertinent and reliable as life’s challenges intensify. The importance of those memories will be more visible in future as the life goes on through hard times. Consequently, the university emerges not merely as an educational institution but as an alma mater that moulds individuals with both knowledge and integrity.
The rush to embark on this new phase of life may hasten one’s anticipation of graduation. Nevertheless, the act of leaving high school proves to be a more profound emotional transition than anticipated. On that day, every face bore a smile that was both genuine and infectious. Friends and families exchanged greetings with these unadulterated smiles. It may take years to comprehend that this day marked the last meeting of certain eyes with ours.
Image Courtesies : FOS Media