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I Didn’t Know That: What is Convocation?

Raise your hand if you’d never heard of “Convocation” before coming to Boise State. It turns out, a lot of universities use the term “convocation,” but they don’t all mean the same thing.

The definition of convocation is a large group of people formally assembled for a special purpose. At Boise State – and many other universities – it’s an event that marks the beginning of the first-year student journey. It’s a partner to our graduation ceremony, which marks the end of that journey.

At some universities, like most in Canada and India, along with University of Chicago and Cornell University, convocation is actually the term they use for a graduation event, what Boise State calls “Commencement.”

At other universities, “convocation” refers to a college’s alumni as a representative body of alumni to university administration. So depending on where you’re from, convocation might mean different things.

So why can’t all universities agree to call it the same thing? I still don’t know that.

Though, perhaps most importantly, “convocation” is the collective noun of a group of eagles. #themoreyouknow

By Mike Taylor