May 18, 2014 will be a day to remember as last-year students of our Dentistry Degree took Valencia Conference Centre to celebrate their Graduation Ceremony.

Graduation ceremonies are a university-wide event at which the academic authorities of the university formally confer all graduates their degree, represented with a decorative band of the official color corresponding to the degree. As the Rector of the CEU Cardenal Herrera University always remembers in her introduction words, this ceremonies take us back to the origins of the University or the Universitas, as it was called in the Middle Ages. These bands (or becas, as they are known in Spanish), which represent the traditional way Spanish college students were dressed, are now used as an identifier of those who have graduated from University.

Graduation ceremonies are always an exciting and festive occasion, with student and faculty representatives from the community participating and sharing the students’ achievement. On Sunday, May 18, we attended a truly international event as it gathered together, for the first time, Graduating Students from both Spanish and International groups.

The event started with an extraordinary performance by the Dentistry CEU Valencia Chamber Orchestra, conducted by Dr. Juan Luis Ferrer and made up of young virtuosi students of Dentistry. The Orchestra welcomed the attendees with a pleasant 20-minute concert which included the following repertoire:

Canon in D Major, by Johann Pachelbel

Flute Concerto in F Major, RV 434, by Antonio Vivaldi

Flute Concerto in E Major, Allegro. “Spring”, RV 269, by Antonio Vivaldi

Flute Concerto in E Major, Pastorale. “Spring”,  RV 269, by Antonio Vivaldi

After the concert, the Academic Ceremony began. A number of speeches were given throughout the ceremony, expressing words of gratitude and sharing anecdotes of the years passed at our university. Cristina Ribes Vallés, Vice-Dean of Dentistry, gave an emotional welcome speech before passing the floor to the Students’ Representatives Tamara, Marta, Peter Haoyu Wang and Edward Cho.

After the speeches, Graduating Students went on stage and walked to the presiding table, where they received their bands, an insignia, a commemorative plaque and a socarrat, a traditional piece of Valencian handcrafted ceramics. As Alicia López Castellano, Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences, explained during her speech, the socarrat was a special gift from the Faculty and represented the image of Saint Apollonia, patron saint of dentists who suffered martyrdom in the 3rd Century.

With all the degrees awarded, symbollically representing the farewell from the university, it was time to welcome the new Graduates to the professional world in the words of the sponsor Araceli Morales, President of the Spanish Society of Dental Implants.

To end the ceremony, Rosa Visiedo, Rector of the CEU Cardenal Herrera University, gave a final address and dedicated the following words to the new Graduates, taken from Whitman’s poem “Carpe Diem”:

Do not let the day end without having grown a bit, without being happy,

without having risen your dreams.

Do not let overcome by disappointment.

Do not forsake the yearning to make your life something special.

Do not let life pass you without living it.

That is what we wish for you. It was a pleasure for everyone at CEU Cardenal Herrera University to welcome the friends and families of the Dentistry Class of 2014 and we would like to extend once again our heartfelt congratulations to our new Graduates!

We remind you that all the photos are available for free download at our Flickr gallery, and are also published on our Facebook page; don’t forget to tag and share and make everyone part of your graduation memories!

And you, what were your thoughts of the ceremony?

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