PULLMAN, Wash. — U.S. Rep. George R. Nethercutt Jr., R-Spokane, will speak at Washington State University’s first fall commencement at 9 a.m., Dec. 15, in the Beasley Performing Arts Coliseum.

Nethercutt, a 1967 WSU graduate, will deliver the address to 400 to 600 students at the event.

“His support of the university in Congress and as an active alum makes Rep. Nethercutt an excellent invited speaker choice for this first of an annual event,” said Dave Guzman, university registrar. “We’re pleased he accepted WSU’s invitation.”

Jesse Keene, president of the Associated Students of WSU, also will speak, and WSU President V. Lane Rawlins will preside.

The university added a fall commencement so students graduating in August and December can participate in a ceremony closer to their studies’ completion. Although students are eligible to graduate in the spring, many chose to return home immediately after classes end, Guzman said.

“Commencement is an important part of the academic experience,” he said. “It brings closure and signals a milestone in an individual’s life. We’re very pleased to offer this to our students and their families.”

Fall commencement for the University of Idaho, eight miles from the WSU campus in Moscow, Idaho, also will be Dec. 15 at 1 p.m. WSU’s 106th spring commencement will be May 11, also in the coliseum.

The following is a timeline for fall commencement:

● Oct. 15 is the deadline for doctoral candidates and faculty members to contact the Bookie, WSU’s bookstore, and order regalia to be guaranteed correct academic hood colors.

● Oct. 19 is the application deadline for those graduating in December. Students will not receive their degree if they do not apply. Application forms are available in the WSU Registrar’s Office, French Administration Building, Room 346, or in the academic departments. A guide, “Steps to Graduation,” is available at the WSU Web site, www.registrar.wsu.edu/commencement, or in the senior handbooks, available at WSU Career Services, Lighty Student Services Building, Room 180.

● Nov. 7, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., is the day for students planning to take part in fall commencement to pay $25.99 and pick up their caps and gowns at the Bookie during its “Graduation Salute.” Those ordering caps and gowns after Nov. 7 will be subject to a late fee and may not get the exact size needed. Students not on the Pullman campus can order their caps and gowns by contacting the Bookie at 509/332-2537, Ext. 318. A “Graduation Salute” informational packet will be mailed to the permanent addresses of December applicants.

● All students who received financial aid and/or scholarships must schedule and participate in an exit interview with the WSU Office of Student Financial Aid in Lighty 380. Contact staff at 509/335-9711, finaid@wsu.edu.

● In March, after degrees are conferred, diplomas will be mailed to students’ permanent addresses on file at the university. WSU students can confirm and, if necessary, update their permanent address at the WSU Web site, www.it.wsu.edu/AIS/ATMS/atms.htm.

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