Skip to main content

Trent University Durham to Host Inaugural Durham Convocation Ceremony June 3

June 1, 2016

Ceremony to honour over 100 graduating students from Trent’s GTA campus and present Kathleen Taylor with honorary degree

Convocation at Trent University

For the first time in its 42 year history, Trent University Durham will host a dedicated convocation ceremony in the Durham Region, celebrating the accomplishments of its newest class of graduates, and welcoming students and their families, as well as faculty, staff and special guests to the Ajax Convention Centre on Friday, June 3, 2016 at 11:00 am.

Durham students advocated for the move of convocation to the Durham Region. The dedicated ceremony is a milestone for Trent University Durham – marking the first time that a class will graduate as a distinct cohort with its own special convocation ceremony in the Durham Region. Prior to this, the Durham graduation ceremony was hosted at Trent’s Peterborough campus.

“This is an historic milestone for the growth and development of Trent University Durham,” said Joe Muldoon, head of Trent University Durham. “It’s the start of a new tradition at our Durham campus.”

Trent’s president and vice-chancellor, Dr. Leo Groarke, and Dr. Jackie Muldoon, provost and vice-president academic, will preside over convocation at the Durham ceremony, during which degrees will be granted in all Trent University Durham programs, including: Business Administration, English Literature, Psychology, Sociology, Anthropology, History, Cultural Studies, Gender & Women’s Studies, and Information Systems. Postgraduate certificates in Human Resources Management will also be granted.

Also at the ceremony, an honorary degree will be presented to local resident Kathleen Taylor, the first female leader of a major Canadian bank. The Symons Award for Excellence in Teaching, one of the University’s highest honours, will also be presented to Dr. Joel Baetz, an English Literature professor at Trent University Durham.

Watch the live webcast of the ceremonies at or follow @TrentUniversity on Twitter and Facebook and add your own comments and photos during the ceremonies by using the hashtag #TrentConvo.

Friday’s ceremony will be the first of seven convocation ceremonies at Trent University. Six ceremonies will be held from June 7 to 9 at the Symons Campus in Peterborough. Over the course of four days and seven ceremonies, Trent University will honour 1,602 members of the 2016 graduating class. A total of 1,513 undergraduate students will receive their degrees. Of these students, 111 of them will graduate with a degree or certificate from Trent University Durham.

Statistics from the Office of the Registrar for undergraduate studies show that thirty five per cent of this year’s graduates are named to the honour roll. Of this year’s undergraduate students, 51 per cent are completing degrees in the arts and 49 per cent in the sciences.

In addition to Ms. Taylor, the University will bestow honorary degrees upon three other outstanding individuals who are being recognized for their extraordinary contributions to academic life at Trent and to society as a whole, including: publisher and entrepreneur devoted to Canadian nature, Michael de Pencier; internationally-renowned novelist, Linwood Barclay ’73, and acclaimed Canadian journalist, Roy MacGregor.

Trent will also bestow degrees upon 119 graduate students, the largest graduate class ever at the University, with 20 students receiving doctorates and 99 receiving masters degrees. Of this year’s graduate students, 56 are completing degrees in the arts and 43 in the sciences.

During the 2016 Convocation ceremonies, Trent will also honour several of its most accomplished students with special awards:

  • The Governor General’s Academic Medal to reward scholastic merit was established in 1873 by the Earl of Dufferin who served as Governor General of Canada from 1872 to 1878. The Silver Medal and Gold Medal are awarded to the students with the highest academic standing in the undergraduate and graduate programs, respectively.
  • The President's Medal, established in 2009, will be awarded to three graduate students who achieved academic excellence in several degree programs.
  • The Symons Medal, established in 1972 in honour of Trent’s founding president T.H.B. Symons, will be awarded to four undergraduate students in the Honours program who achieve high overall standing on graduation.
  • The Bagnani Medal, established in 1986 to honour the late founding faculty member Professor Gilbert Bagnani, will be awarded to two students in the General program who achieve high overall standing on graduation.

A detailed breakdown of each convocation ceremony is as follows:

Friday, June 3, 2016 – 11:00 a.m. ceremony in Durham:

All degrees will be conferred for Trent University Durham. Also at this ceremony an honorary degree will be conferred upon Kathleen Taylor, and Dr. Joel Baetz will be presented with the Symons Award for Excellence in Teaching.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016 – 10:00 a.m. ceremony:

Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees will be conferred for Forensic Science and joint major degrees with Forensic Science, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Biology, Chemistry, Chemical Physics, Computing Systems and Physics, Mathematical Computer Science, Mathematical Physics, Mathematics, and Physics. Also at this ceremony: the Symons Medal will be awarded to Tobias Bernstein and James Godfrey, and the Governor General’s Silver Medal will be awarded to Steven Ufkes. An Eminent Service award will also be presented to Dr. Peter Dawson.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016 – 2:00 p.m. ceremony:

Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees will be conferred for Environmental Science/Studies, Computing and Information Systems, Ecological Restoration, Environmental and Resource Science/Studies, Environmental Chemistry, Geography, Psychology, and Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems. Also at this ceremony: the Bagnani Medal will be awarded to Robyn Hummel and Michael de Pencier will be presented with an honorary degree.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016 – 10:00 a.m. ceremony:

Bachelor of Arts Degrees will be conferred for Ancient History & Classics, Canadian Studies, Cultural Studies, English Literature, Gender and Women’s Studies, History, Media Studies, Modern Languages and Literatures, French, German and Hispanic Studies and Philosophy. Also at this ceremony: an honorary degree will be conferred upon Linwood Barclay. 

Wednesday, June 8, 2016 – 2:00 p.m. ceremony:

Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees will be conferred for, Anthropology, Archaeology Economics, Indigenous Studies, Indigenous Environmental Studies, International Development Studies, International Political Economy, Mathematical Economics, Political Studies and Sociology as well as diplomas in Foundations of Indigenous Learning. The first classes graduating from Trent with an Arts and Science degree and the joint Journalism program will also be conferred upon. Also at this ceremony: an honorary degree will be conferred upon Roy MacGregor, the Symons Medal will be presented to Alexandra Mateer, and Marian Leahy will be awarded an Eminent Service award.

Thursday, June 9, 2016 – 10:00 a.m. ceremony:

Doctoral degrees, Master of Art and Master of Science degrees, Bachelor of Education degrees, and Business Administration degrees and joint major degrees in Business Administration will be conferred. Certificates in Human Resource Management will also be granted. Also at this ceremony the Governor General Gold Medal will be awarded to Duane Rouselle, the President’s Medals will be awarded to Chad Warren Cuss, and Rebecca Martin, and the Symons’ Medal will be awarded to Maria Carruthers.

Thursday, June 9, 2016 – 2:00 p.m. ceremony:

Nursing degrees will be conferred.

For detailed information on the 2016 Convocation ceremonies, please visit

For more information contact:

Kate Weersink, media relations & strategic communications officer, Trent University, (705) 748-1011 x6180 or

If you no longer wish to receive news releases and advisories from Trent University, please email to unsubscribe. Accessible versions of this document are available upon request at