Well, it’s official – the MAcc 2012 class has graduated! The Graduate Programs Office held a lovely reception for our class on Friday evening. It was wonderful to have my family meet my friends and their families. We enjoyed catching up over hors d’oeuvres before the start of the official ceremony, which included thought-provoking and entertaining speeches by Dean Mangum, professors Anil Arya and Pat Turner, student Jeff Howard, alumnus Bobby Murphy (class of 2010), and Michael Petrecca, a partner with PwC. We all got our names called as we walked across the stage, which is something that of course cannot happen for everyone at the university’s commencement. The finishing touch on the ceremony was a video montage of our MAcc year – so much fun! I loved having our entire class together one last time, but of course it was a bittersweet evening. I was not (and am admittedly still not) ready for our MAcc year to be over.
On Saturday, my family got to experience my exciting Ohio State life through lunch with MAcc friends and families, pictures with my undergraduate Cohort, a Cohort reception, a picnic with my roommates and families, and the candlelight ceremony on the Oval. The student speaker at the candlelight ceremony encouraged us to define our Ohio State years in 6 words, and though it would be hard to capture the essence of my time at Ohio State in such limited vocabulary, I will say this about my MAcc year: This was the best year yet!
On Sunday, commencement was held in Ohio Stadium. There was a record-setting number of graduates (around 10,640), and about 50,000 guests were there for the ceremony. Despite the stifling heat, the ceremony was fun and impressive. As the first listed graduate program in the commencement agenda (“accounting” comes first alphabetically, apparently), we all had good seats for the speakers and enjoyed sitting together as a class. We heard from President Gee, Archie Griffin, and Susan Rice, the U.S. Permanent Ambassador to the United Nations. Then we each got our picture taken on the field as we received our diplomas. It’s amazing we can get our individual photos and our actual diplomas! What a logistical feat! There was a group of us MAccers who got our picture taken with university president Gee after the ceremony, and then many of us went back to Fisher to get post-graduation pictures together.
It is so sad that many of our classmates have already left Ohio, but I know we will keep in touch! This has been a phenomenal year with lifelong friendships and lessons. I can say with certainty that the faculty, staff, and students I have had the privilege of getting to know this year have impacted my life in so many positive ways, many I likely have yet to realize. I look forward to seeing where life takes us all but know there are wonderful things ahead for everyone! In the meantime, there are about 20 of us taking CPA classes together this summer, and I am so thankful for their company. We just can’t get away yet, and I look forward to sticking around Ohio State and Fisher over the summer. In the fall, though, a new class of awesome MAccers will start their new adventures at Ohio State, and I am so excited for them! I hope that one year from now they will also be saying “This was the best year yet!”