Boise State to hold 2 graduation ceremonies after outrage from students, families

Boise State University officials announced Friday that the university will hold two separate commencement ceremonies on May 5 in Taco Bell Arena. The school had been under fire in recent weeks after announcing commencement would be moved from Albertsons Stadium and that graduates would be limited to five guest tickets.

Tickets will now not be required.

“Holding two ceremonies ensures that everyone who wants to attend the ceremony may do so,” a press release stated. “If family and friends can only make it to one of the two ceremonies, students may work with the registrar's office to participate in either ceremony, regardless of their home college.”

The first ceremony will be held at 9:30 a.m. for graduates from the schools of Business and Economics and Engineering and Health Sciences.. The second ceremony will begin at 3:30 p.m. for graduates from the College of Education, College of Arts and Sciences and School of Public Service.

Each ceremony will feature a different student speaker.

If a student is unable to make his or her specified ceremony, the registrar will help students participate in the other ceremony, regardless of program.

Students started an online petition against the move from Albertsons Stadium to Taco Bell Arena that garnered more than 1,300 signatures.

Boise State usually holds two commencements per school year: winter and spring. The ceremonies have been held at Taco Bell Arena every year “in recent memory” except for last spring, when the graduation was held at Albertsons Stadium to mark the school’s 100th commencement, BSU spokesman Greg Hahn previously told the Idaho Statesman.

Michael Katz: 208-377-6444, @MichaelLKatz