WMST/LGBT Studies Undergraduate Research Day

Thursday, May 5, 2016
The Department of Women’s Studies invites you to join us throughout the day for a celebration of student WMST/LGBT research. A schedule of the day’s events is forthcoming.

The Status of Facts
Sponsored by The Potomac Center for the Studies of Modernity

Friday, May 6, 2016, 2-5:30pm, Michelle Smith Collaboratory for Visual Culture, 4213 Parren J. Mitchell Art-Sociology Bldg
This symposium is intended as a conversation between social science and humanities scholars to discuss one of modernity’s key commitments, factuality. While modern cultures have been shaped largely by faith in the authority of data and empirical research, critiques both traditional and new have questioned such authority on grounds ranging from religion to philosophical relativism to anti-establishment social activism. Academic debates over the authority of facts have, meanwhile, varied by discourse and discipline. A striking feature of modern life has been the rise of quantification, a tendency recently reshaped by the digitization of huge data sets. The easy manipulability of such data, however, is also widely recognized. Do facts remain a central article of faith? Can facts promise better knowledge (even better access to truth) as well as better policy? The symposium will directly address a crucial question too rarely asked: what is the status of facts in contemporary culture and in contemporary academic inquiry?

A Conversation with Laverne Cox
Sponsored by the Vo!ces of Social Change

Friday, May 6, 2016, 3-4:30pm, Memorial Chapel
Laverne Cox is an American actress, reality television star, television producer, and LGBT advocate, best known for her portrayal of Sophia Burset on the Netflix television series Orange Is the New Black, for which she became the first openly transgender person to be nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award in the acting category.

Last Day of Spring 2016 Classes

Tuesday, May 10, 2016
Final exams are scheduled from Thursday, May 12 through Wednesday, May 18. See more information about the schedule of final exams.

Lavender Graduation

Wednesday, May 18, 2016, 1-3pm, Colony Ballroom, Adele H. Stamp Student Union
Sponsored by the LGBT Equity Center

Lavender Graduation recognizes an important milestone in the lives of our LGBTQ and Allied graduates. Each LGBTQA graduate will receive a rainbow tassel and a certificate of distinction. This event also provides an opportunity for our community to come together and honor those among us who have worked to make College Park a better place for LGBTQ people.

Graduates at all levels (certificates, bachelors, masters, doctoral) are especially encouraged to attend and bring family, friends, and other significant individuals in their lives. This may include members of faculty or staff. Of course, all faculty and staff as well as alumni are invited. Lavender Graduation is only held in May. Thus, December graduates are invited to join us at either the closest Lavender Graduation prior to or following their December graduation.

Dressy casual attire is recommended. Academic regalia is optional.

Please RSVP by going to

Campus-wide Commencement Ceremony

Wednesday, May 18, 2016, 7pm, Xfinity Center
The procession of students begins promptly at 6:40 p.m. The campus-wide commencement ceremony represents the culmination of a student’s academic career at the University of Maryland. Unlike the individual college or school ceremonies, it is an opportunity for the president to congratulate the graduates as a group. Although graduates do not walk across the stage in the campus-wide ceremony, it is in this ceremony that the degrees are officially conferred. At the end of the ceremony, the graduates will turn their tassels from the right to the left, symbolizing the transition from student to alumnus. The university encourages graduates, their family and friends to attend this approximately 90-minute event marking the beginning of the two-day commencement celebration.

Departments of Women’s Studies and American Studies Commencement Ceremony

Thursday, May 19, 2016, 12 p.m., Memorial Chapel
In this more intimate commencement ceremony, the Departments of Women’s Studies and American Studies will recognize each graduate individually as their names are called and they walk across the stage. Students receiving bachelor degrees in Women’s Studies, as well as those receiving any one of the department’s four undergraduate certificates or minors, the graduate certificate, and master’s degree are invited to walk in the departmental ceremony. Graduates may bring as many guests as they wish; no tickets are necessary.

If you or your guests require special assistance regarding parking, seating, interpreters, etc., please send an email to Ms. Cliffornia Pryor (

Immediately following the ceremony there will be a Reception in 2101 Woods Hall — all Women’s Studies Graduates and their families/friends are invited to attend. No RSVP necessary. We hope you’ll stop by!