Trent University Celebrates 43rd Convocation June 2, 3 and 4


President Steven E. Franklin and Chancellor Tom Jackson to Preside over their First Convocation; 1,883 Graduates to be Honoured in Five Ceremonies Over Three Days, including largest class of graduating students

Wednesday, May 26, 2010, Peterborough

Convocation Highlights:

  • 43rd Convocation
  • 1,793 undergraduate degrees to be granted (including 12 diplomas)
  • 90 graduate degrees – 10 Ph.D.s and 80 Masters degrees
  • Five distinguished Canadians to receive Honorary Degrees
  • First graduates of the Materials Science M.Sc. program

During its 43rd convocation, Trent University will honour 1,883 members of the graduating class of 2010 over the course of five ceremonies on Wednesday, June 2; Thursday, June 3; and Friday, June 4.

Among this year’s undergraduate and graduate students receiving degrees and diplomas at the ceremonies is the largest class of graduate students in the University’s history and the very first graduate of the new Materials Science M.Sc. program.

Dr. Steven E. Franklin, Trent’s seventh president and vice-chancellor, and Dr. Tom Jackson, the University’s tenth chancellor, will preside over their first convocation. They were both installed in September 2009.

Two ceremonies will be held on Wednesday and Thursday at 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. On Friday, one ceremony will be held at 10 a.m. All ceremonies take place outdoors on the podium of the Bata Library on the Symons Campus. Over 100 volunteers, mostly University employees and retirees, will be lending a hand at this year’s convocation ceremonies.

Over the five ceremonies, degrees will be presented to 1,781 undergraduate, 12 diploma and 90 graduate students. Ten Ph.D.s and 80 Masters degrees – 42 in the arts and 38 in the sciences – will be granted, the largest class of graduate students in Trent’s history.

Also at the ceremonies, the Governor General’s Gold Medal will be presented to the graduate student with the highest standing and the Silver Medal will be presented to the undergraduate student with the highest standing. In addition, four Symons Medals and two Bagnani Medals will be presented to undergraduate students who have achieved high academic standing in their programs. The President’s Medal will be awarded to three outstanding graduate students. During the ceremonies, five distinguished Canadians will receive honorary degrees.

Statistics from the Office of the Registrar for undergraduate studies show that 68 per cent of graduates are female, while 32 per cent are male. At the graduate level, 58 per cent of graduates are female and 42 per cent are male.

All undergraduate students graduating with a cumulative average of at least 80 per cent are named to the President’s Honour Roll. This year, 21 per cent of all graduates are on the President’s Honour Roll.  

A detailed breakdown of each convocation ceremony is as follows:

On Wednesday, June 2 at 10 a.m. degrees will be conferred on all graduates in the following programs: Ancient History & Classics, Canadian Studies, Cultural Studies, English Literature, Geography, and History. Students receiving a Diploma in Canadian Studies will also be honoured. An honorary degree will be conferred upon the Honourable Peter Adams, who will address convocation. Also at this ceremony, Professor John Wadland will be presented with the Eminent Service Award. Professors Emeriti James Neufeld, Colin Taylor and Andrew Wernick will also be recognized.

On Wednesday, June 2 at 3 p.m., Bachelor of Education degrees will be conferred. An honorary degree will be conferred upon the Honourable William G. Davis, who will address convocation.

On Thursday, June 3 at 10 a.m. Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees will be conferred upon graduates in the following programs: Anthropology, Computer Science/Studies, Computing and Information Systems, Economics, Environmental & Resource Science/Studies, Global Studies, Globalization: Communities & Identities, Indigenous Studies, Indigenous Environmental Studies, International Development Studies, International Political Economy, Modern Languages & Literatures: French, German, Hispanic Studies, Philosophy, Politics, Sociology, and Women's Studies. Diplomas in Foundations in Indigenous Learning, Indigenous Environmental Studies, Indigenous Management & Economic Development, Kanyen'Keha (Mohawk) Language will also be presented. An honorary degree will be conferred upon Nancy Strickland, who will address convocation. Also at this ceremony, Professor Paul Shaffer will be presented with the Symons Award for Excellence in Teaching and the Distinguished Research Award will be presented to Professor Douglas Evans. Professors Emeriti Franklin Garcia Sanchez, Jim Jury and Teobaldo Noriega will also be recognized.

On Thursday, June 3 at 3 p.m. all Bachelor of Science in Nursing degrees will be conferred. Degrees will also be conferred on all graduates in the following programs: Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, Biology, Chemistry, Chemical Physics, Computing Systems & Physics, Environmental Chemistry, Mathematics, Mathematical Computer Science, Mathematical Economics, Mathematical Physics, Physics & Astronomy and Psychology. An honorary degree will be conferred upon Dr. John Mighton, who will address convocation.

On Friday, June 4 at 10 a.m. Doctoral and Masters degrees will be conferred upon graduates, as well as Bachelor of Business Administration. All graduates of Trent University in Oshawa programs will also be recognized. An honorary degree will be conferred upon Dr. Robert Glossop, who will address convocation.

Green Initiatives

For the second year, several green initiatives designed to reduce the event’s impact on the environment will be part of Trent’s Convocation ceremonies, including:

Water Bottle-Free Convocation
By eliminating the use of commercial bottled water at the ceremonies, Trent will reduce the negative environmental and social impacts of 5,000 single-use water bottles, which have been consumed at previous ceremonies. In lieu of bottled water, the University will set up a water station at an Information Table to provide tap water in recyclable or biodegradable cups to all guests of Convocation. Graduates will each receive a take-home gift of a stainless steel water bottle which will be filled with tap water for their use during the outdoor ceremonies.

Free Passes for Peterborough Transit
In addition to the bottle-water free initiative, graduates and their families are being actively encouraged to reduce emissions by travelling, free of charge, on Peterborough Transit to and from the ceremonies. This option will also benefit guests by alleviating parking concerns on campus.

Green Pledge
To demonstrate their commitment to the environment, Trent students are also encouraged to take the Green Pledge, where they pledge to explore and take into account the social and environmental consequences of any job they consider and will try to improve those aspects of any organization for which they work. Graduates who take the Green Pledge wear a green ribbon on their gown. This initiative was started in 2005 and is coordinated by the student-run group Sustainable Trent. Last year, Trent boasted the highest number of graduates (50 per cent) in Canada who pledged to be socially and environmentally conscious.


Media are invited and encouraged to attend convocation. Media covering convocation will be provided with an official media tag allowing them into limited access points. Passes are available at the Marketing & Communications Office, lower level, Bata Library, and will be handed out at 8:30 a.m. on Wednesday, June 2.

For official comments and more information on convocation details, please contact:
Meri Kim Oliver, Associate Vice-President, Student Services, (705) 748-1011 x7122

For more information on convocation logistics and media support, please contact:
Kathryn Verhulst-Rogers, Communications Officer, Trent University, (705) 748-1011 x6182

For further information on the 2010 Convocation ceremonies, including details about the honorary graduands, visit