PULLMAN — WSU’s Office of Multicultural Student Services (MSS) will hold its first shared Multicultural Graduation Ceremony at 6 p.m. Friday, May 8, at Schweitzer Event Center in Pullman.

For many years, MSS planned four separate annual multicultural graduation events for the African-American, Asian-Pacific Islander, Chicano-Latino, and Native American communities. This May, all four groups will be recognized during one ceremony for the first time.

According to MSS Director, J. Manuel Acevedo, the shared ceremony will capture the unique cultural elements of each community, while highlighting the richness of intercultural collaboration at WSU.

“The ceremony allows us to celebrate the accomplishments of the students, share in this proud moment for them, their families, and communities, and provide them with a positive and an uplifting final experience as they prepare to leave our institution,” he said.

The event also serves as a transition point for students as they begin their alumni experience. “We hope our graduates maintain their partnership with the University, contributing to a very strong legacy of diversity and a powerful experience for current and future generations of students,” Acevedo said.

The WSU Alumni Association (WSUAA) will support the event by providing culturally relevant stoles for the new graduates. Vibrant WSUAA multicultural alumni chapters are actively involved with MSS and multicultural alumni often speak at the graduation events.

“Multicultural Graduation is an opportunity to celebrate the hard work and success of our new graduates,” said Malia Karlinsky ’93, president of the Asian American/Pacific Islander Alumni Alliance. “It’s an honor for all of us who are members of the Multicultural Alumni Alliances to be a part of this exciting event.”

The program will include entertainment by the Palouse Intertribal Drum Group, Mariachi WAZZU, AAPI Fusion Group, and God’s Harmony Gospel Choir. Over 100 students are expected to participate. The event is free and open to the public. Doors will open at 5 p.m. For more information, contact Philip Sinapati at the Multicultural Student Center at 509-335-1986 or filipo_pls@wsu.edu.

The primary mission of MSS is to facilitate the best undergraduate experience for multicultural students by fostering their successful transition, adjustment, achievement and graduation.