The University of Montana will celebrate Saturday the graduation of 2,290 students earning 2,620 degrees this spring and summer at its 122nd commencement.
UM alumna and 2018 MacArthur Fellow Lisa Parks of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology will deliver the commencement address at both the 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. events at the Adams Center.
The MacArthur fellowship is known as the "Genius Award."
"We are delighted to have such an esteemed University of Montana graduate and respected thinker as our speaker this year," UM President Seth Bodnar said in an earlier statement.
Parks leads the MIT Global Media Technologies and Cultures Lab, or GMTaC, and she studies the influence of satellites on modern culture, among other areas. UM notes the media systems researcher has lectured in more than 25 countries.
"Dr. Parks is a leader in her field, an inspired teacher and scholar who works across disciplines, and an example of the strength of a UM education," Bodnar said.
Commencement is among several events that will bring much traffic to the center of Missoula this weekend. First Friday brings art lovers downtown, and on Saturday, the farmers markets kick off.
Saturday at the Adams Center, UM opens doors an hour before each graduation ceremony. The flagship noted each ceremony will run roughly two to two-and-a-half hours and will feature "recognition of every student as they cross the stage."
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Advisers will hood doctoral students, and graduates will have their names read and images projected on the screen, and they will shake hands with Bodnar and their dean.
UM noted most departments also are holding individual celebrations, and complete information is available at umt.edu/registrar/Commencement/spring2019/individual-celebrations.php.
"Students completing their degree in spring, summer and fall 2019 are all welcome to participate in the event," said Rebecca Power, in the UM Registrar's Office.
UM notes tickets are not required for graduation, and seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis. UM also notes it will not charge for parking on campus on commencement.
Power noted the total number of spring semester candidates earning degrees includes more than 1,400 undergraduates, more than 600 graduates and law students.
She also said summer degree candidates to date include 248 people earning 269 degrees, with 147 undergraduates and 101 graduate students so far.
For additional details and frequently asked questions, visit UM at umt.edu/registrar/Commencement/spring2019/default.php.