Under one roof: IMI graduates honoured during U of T convocation ceremony

Monday, June 12, 2017 - 8:40am
Sarah Jane Silva
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Graduating UTM students make their way into U of T’s historical Convocation Hall, marking the point at which they begin the next chapter of their lives. Photo by Ryan Cerrudo.

More than 400 students from both the undergraduate (Commerce and Management) and professional graduate programs (Master of Biotechnology and Master of Science in Sustainability Management), along with family, friends, faculty and staff celebrated their academic achievements at U of T’s Convocation Hall on Thursday, June 8.

“We are grateful to celebrate the achievements of our scholars who graduate today,” Ulrich Krull, interim U of T Mississauga vice-president and principal said to the graduating class. “On their behalf, let us express gratitude for the support of their families and friends and for the support of faculty and staff that have guided them in their pursuit of knowledge.”

After which Krull asked the graduating class to reflect on what they were like when they arrived at UTM. “My guess is some of you, if you were like me, had doubts on whether you would be able to succeed,” he said. “Fast forward, here you are. Not only have you succeeded, you flourished.”

The convocation address was delivered by guest speaker and UTM alumna Kristine Stewart, a former CBC executive who also did turns at Alliance Atlantis, Hallmark Channel and Twitter Canada. Stewart recently joined Diply.com, a social news and entertainment website as its chief strategy officer.

“Change is absolutely scary but I can tell you that you are so lucky right now,” she said. “There’s a lot happening in the world and a lot of it feels like it’s happening to us not for us, but you should feel confident because you are not powerless.”

“Technology empowers the individual to make their own success even outside of the corporate structure,” she said, adding: “We are living in a very cool world of opportunities right now.”

After the ceremony, students and their families lingered around King’s College Circle, clamouring for the perfect photo before heading off to an evening reception. Proud and wistful, they remained in that bittersweet, last-days-of-university, simultaneously looking backward and forward.