A Christian College of the Liberal Arts & Sciences

Message from President Mullen

February, 2014

Dear Families of Graduating Students,

I am pleased to invite you to share with us the events of Commencement 2014 at Houghton College.  This is a significant time for all of us who have been involved in the lives of our graduating seniors.  Clearly, the seniors themselves see its significance—and are now torn between the excitement of “being done with college” and the sadness of leaving friends and connections that have come to mean so much to them over the past several years.  For us at Houghton, and for you as parents, this is a time to celebrate with them, to acknowledge their accomplishments, and to bless them with our confidence and hope as they embark on the next stage of their journey.  This next phase of life is one in which they will have the opportunity and challenge as never before, to live out, on their own, the implications of the choices they have made and the invitations they have accepted.

Our task during this graduation weekend is to be present for them—in gratitude and affirmation—confirming our support for them and our confidence in all the good that God is intending for them in the days ahead.

We hope you will join us for baccalaureate, when we will hear from one of our faculty or staff and two graduating seniors.  Our commencement speaker will be Rev. David Beckmann, President of Bread for the World.  We will welcome to our ceremony, graduates from the Golden Highlander Class of 1964, whose presence illustrates for our seniors the lifelong impact of a Houghton education and of God’s faithfulness.  Most important of all, we will recognize the graduates of 2014.

Following is a brief version of the weekend schedule:

Friday, May 9

  • 10:00 a.m.    Rehearsal (for graduates only)
  • 2:00 p.m.    Senior Equestrian Show/Equestrian Center (everyone is welcome)
  • 3:30 p.m.    ROTC Commissioning Ceremony/Center for Fine Arts Recital Hall (everyone is welcome to attend)
  • 4:30-6:15 p.m.    Senior Family Dinner
  • 6:30 p.m.    Baccalaureate
  • 8:00-10:00 p.m.    Reception for Seniors, their families, and faculty
  • 10:00 p.m.    Senior Class “Spot”

 Saturday, May 10

  • 10:00 a.m.    Commencement Ceremony
  • Reception on the Quad (following the ceremony)

There are always several practical matters of concern.  Let me outline them, and then you can follow up with any particular questions you may have.

Seating—Each graduating senior will receive 3 tickets for seating in the chapel.  Auxiliary seating will be available in the Recital Hall, Instrumental Rehearsal Room and Campus Center Lounge via large-screen projection.  We welcome all who wish to attend!  Additional tickets for chapel seating may be available.  However, the graduating seniors must request these and will soon receive details as to how to make this request.

Lodging—In addition to the nearby hotels, we will open our dorms to accommodate many families here on campus.  If you would like to stay in college housing, please register online at www.houghton.edu/commencement by April 25.

Meals—You may purchase tickets for Friday breakfast, lunch and dinner and Saturday breakfast.  Please register online at www.houghton.edu/commencement by April 25. (Graduating seniors do not need meal tickets.)

Receptions—Receptions are open to everyone, without need for tickets.  

Photo/Video—Professional photographers will take individual photos of each graduate as he or she receives the diploma and crosses the stage.  Likewise, a professional videographer will record the entire program.  Purchase of these is entirely optional, and information about ordering will be sent to you separately.  Links will also be available on the Commencement website. In addition, the commencement video will be available on the website as a free download.

If you have further questions, please contact the Events’ Office at 585-567-9210 or commencement@houghton.edu.  This information is also available on the Commencement website at www.houghton.edu/commencement.

I am delighted to have you join us in celebrating the graduation of Houghton’s Class of 2014.  There is no more exciting time on a college campus than to see the graduates “come into their own” and go out into the world to put into practice all that they have learned.  Just as you entrusted them to us several years ago, so now you, as parents, and we, as a college community, join together in entrusting them into God’s hands for his purposes and his plans in the coming days.


Shirley A. Mullen