by Ward Mullens, Published June 09, 2010
YPSILANTI - When a tornado hit Dundee June 5, it left a small town with many big problems. Among those problems was a loss of power and the inability to host commencement ceremonies for the 96 graduates of Dundee High School.
The problem was solved with a phone call to Eastern Michigan University’s Convocation Center, just 25 miles north of Dundee.
Dundee High School’s commencement ceremony will take place at Eastern Thursday, June 10 at 7 p.m. Doors open at 6 p.m.
“We are extremely grateful for all that Eastern Michigan University has been able to provide for us to ensure our graduating class gets to celebrate its accomplishments,” said Bryan Schroeder, principal of Dundee High School. “Due to a tornado that passed through our town on Saturday night, we were not able to hold our commencement ceremony on June 6. Not knowing how long it would be until we would be able to get back into school, we decided that we needed to contact different locations to possibly move our ceremony. Without hesitation, we decided to hold our ceremony at EMU, based on their facilities and that their staff was very eager and motivated to make sure this ceremony would be held and our graduates would get the celebration they deserved.”
“Of course we wanted to help in way we could,” said Mark Monahan, director of the convocation center. “And because of the extenuating circumstances, we offered the use of facility free of charge.”
The EMU Convocation Center is playing host to17 area high school and community college graduations this spring and summer.
“We wanted to make this happen, because this is about helping people,” said Marcy Szabo, assistant facilities director for the convocation center.
“It is this type of community connection that has the Dundee community excited about holding our 123rd commencement ceremony at Eastern Michigan University’s Convocation Center,” Schroeder said. “We are extremely grateful as EMU has really stepped up to assist us in trying to take a bad situation and turn into a positive experience for the graduates and this community.”