More than 4,000 Miami University students to graduate in first large ceremony since before pandemic

Miami University will conduct a series of graduations outdoor at Yager Stadium through Sunday evening. (File Photo\Journal-News)

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Miami University will conduct a series of graduations outdoor at Yager Stadium through Sunday evening. (File Photo\Journal-News)

OXFORD — Nearly 4,300 degrees will be awarded in the first large commencement ceremony for Miami University graduates since 2019. The ceremony is set for Saturday at Yager Stadium.

Currently, the event is not ticketed and there is no limit on the number of guests each graduate could have, Miami University officials said. The ceremony is expected to last between an hour and a half and two hours.

Degrees to be awarded include 105 certificates, 97 associates, 3630 bachelor’s, 409 master’s and 12 doctorates, for a total of 4,254.

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Miami alumnus Maj. Gen. Sharon Bannister will offer the commencement address, discussing her path from Miami University to becoming a two-star general. Miami president Gregory Crawford will preside over the graduation.

Bannister is director of medical operations of the Office of the Surgeon General of the U.S. Air Force. She previously served as command surgeon of Air Combat Command. As director of medical operations, she is responsible for developing and executing health care policy in support of 43,000 personnel and 76 medical treatment facilities with a budget of more than $6.2 billion.

She graduated from Miami University in 1988, but at the time, she said she didn’t know what to do with her life. Bannister was a chemistry major who went on to become a dentist and joined the Air Force to help cover her dental training expenses. She never expected to make a career of it.

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She said she plans to urge the graduates to “find their why” in life — something that inspires them to make a difference in the world during the graduation ceremony,

“I don’t know that I’ll ever be exactly like he was, but I just hope I’m the kind of leader that takes care of the community that I’m serving so that maybe I’d recognize their children 20 years later,” Bannister said.

Divisional ceremonies and other graduate recognition programs occur throughout the weekend. More information can be found on Miami University’s commencement webpage.

HOW TO GO

What: 183rd Spring Commencement for degreed candidates

Where: Miami University, Yager Stadium, 700 Weeb Eubank Way, Oxford

When: 10:30 a.m. Saturday

Other: Divisional ceremonies take place at other times; visit miamioh.edu/commencement/upcoming-ceremonies/index.html for information.

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