I had never attended the graduation ceremony of a person receiving his doctoral degree, so I was anxious to have this experience and to see how the procedure differs from undergraduate graduation.
It has been a long road for Lance to get to this point - four years of undergraduate work at Susquehanna University in Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania, followed by two years working toward his master's degree at Villanova University in Philadelphia, and finally four years in the doctoral program at Bowling Green State University, in Bowling Green, Ohio. The last of those ten years was spent writing and finally defending his doctoral dissertation. Here is how his name was announced today in the list of doctoral candidates in the graduation program:
Prior to graduation and before publication, Lance showed me his dissertation. I loved the dedication page at the beginning that simply said "For Sarah, always." (Actually, that's probably the only page in there that I fully understood.)
After more than 260 pages of writing about the French playwright Alfred Jarry's works, Lance concluded his tome with a bibliography of 20 or so pages full of all the books and resources that he had used in his research. It is an incredible product reflecting an extensive amount of work, and I expect that this document will be an invaluable resource in the future to the theater world. I also predict that Lance will follow it up with other related articles in time.
Here is Lance in his doctoral regalia as he approaches the stage:
Each doctoral candidate was escorted to center stage by his advising professor.
Then the dean of graduate studies and the advising professor completed the hooding ceremony for the candidate.
After the hood is placed over the candidate's head, the diploma is presented, along with handshakes, hugs, and congratulations.
What a happy and emotional moment! We all shed some tears of joy as we watched and shared in Lance's excitement and sense of accomplishment.
Our daughter Sarah was the primary breadwinner since they married seven years ago, enabling Lance to pursue his studies and get to this day. So, the celebration today was truly for the both of them.
They made a dream together, and together they accomplished it. Congratulations you two!
It is now my pleasure to present to you, Dr. Lance Mekeel. Please do not hold your applause.