Live video stream will allow loved ones around the world to watch 106th Commencement in real time.
The University of Bridgeport announced today that for the first time ever, it will broadcast live video feed from its 106th Commencement on Saturday, May 7, allowing viewers to watch ceremonies at the Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport from anywhere around the world.
A static title slide will show at http://www.bridgeport.edu/live until 10 a.m. Saturday, when live video feed will begin streaming from inside the Arena. Ceremonies are scheduled to end at noon EST.
During the ceremony, viewers at home are encouraged to participate by posting selfies or congratulatory messages to graduates at #UBGRAD2016.
An archive of the graduation webcast will be available on all UB social media outlets, including Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter.
This year’s Commencement Address will be delivered by GoECart Founder and CEO Manish Chowdhary ’00, who will be awarded an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters moments before 1300 students receive their degrees. Members from the Class of 1966 will be inducted as Golden Knights on the 50th anniversary of their UB graduation.
Not all will celebrate with family. Nearly 40 percent of the Class of 2016 are international students, and for many of them, long distances or prohibitive travel costs make it impossible for their families to attend graduation.
“The live video feed will allow families and friends to go online to cross oceans, cover great distances, transcend time zones, and take a virtual front-row seat to watch their children and loved ones receive degrees,” said Provost Stephen Healey. “We’ve been eager to broadcast important events at UB, and now we can, thanks to the leadership of UB’s Chief Information Officer Matanya Elchanani and Webmaster Alker-Kelly Antoine, and the hard work of our dedicated IT staff. Denise Pundy and Keisha Cox at our Office of Special Events were also instrumental in providing this invaluable service for our graduates and their families. We’re very excited.”
For student Trinadh Venna, 22, the live video stream will do more than include his family back home in Nalgonda, India; it will honor the sacrifices they made to send him to UB.
Venna will receive a Master of Science in Computer Science and Engineering with a concentration in Robotics on Saturday. For the past two years, he’s worked myriad jobs, taught classes as a graduate assistant, built robotic arms, managed drone experiments, and conducted other research projects while keeping up with his studies.
But none of these tasks would have been possible if Venna’s relatives hadn’t agreed to put up the family’s collective property as collateral for a bank loan to pay for him to attend school in the United States.
“I’m from a middle-class-family, but there is no way my father could afford my education abroad,” said Venna, who remembers the day the bank officials came to his home to process loan documents.
“It was a very big thing to see them sign [the loan]. If the loan is not paid, the property will be seized, but no one raised an objection. They did this thing for me,” said Venna. “My grandmother is paralyzed so she had to make a thumb impression [on the documents] as she cannot sign. But it was my grandmother who told my dad, ‘I want Trinadh to go abroad to study.’”
On Saturday, about 30 of Venna’s relatives in India will log onto their computers to watch him receive his degree from UB President Neil A. Salonen.
Media contact: Leslie Geary, (203) 576-4625, firstname.lastname@example.org