Winter graduation ceremonies at Northern Arizona University will cause some traffic delays for motorists tomorrow. The first commencement ceremony starts at 10 a.m. The second commencement ceremony is at 3 p.m. This year’s commencement speakers will be Claire Schonaerts, an associate professor of elementary and special education, and Nicole Walker, director of NAU's Creative Writing program. Schonaerts will speak at the 10 a.m. ceremony and Walker at the 3 p.m. ceremony.
Schonaerts has taught for more than 40 years, including literacy instruction in China, Russia, the Czech Republic and Slovenia. She received the David A. Williams Award for Innovation in 2014 and the College of Education Teacher of the Year Award in 2015 and continues to serve in NAU’s Teachers’ Academy.
Walker writes about sustainability, the Colorado Plateau and education. She developed the Master’s of Fine Arts program at NAU and is the author of several books; her latest is “Sustainability: A Love Story.” She received a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts and a notable essayist in Best American Essays 2008, 2014, 2015 and 2016 and nonfiction winner of the Best of the Net in 2013 and 2014.
Some one-way roads on campus will have their traffic flow reversed for graduation. Campus police officers will be directing traffic before and after the ceremonies.
The doors to the Walkup Skydome, where the ceremonies are held, open about 90 minutes before each ceremony. Families are encouraged to arrive early to find a seat. Graduates should arrive an hour early NAU also states on its website, that air horns, balloons or large signs that may block the view of others are not allowed in the Skydome during the ceremony.