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Why Do Students Decorate Their Graduation Caps?

Graduation is just around the corner for Ohio Wesleyan seniors. May 11, 2024 is commencement. As the seniors begin to prepare for their next steps they must first finish all their Ohio Wesleyan classes and extracurricular responsibilities.


The to-do lists for students are packed in April, and one thing on some students' lists is to paint or decorate their graduation cap. This is a big tradition for some students. Some also got the opportunity to decorate their high school graduation cap, however some were not allowed which is why they are so excited they have the opportunity now in college.


Decorating their grad cap allows students to be unique and creative. Students can choose designs that mean something special to them. OWU senior, Sisi Fish shares “I want to decorate my cap because it's a tradition at colleges all over America. I decided to go with a quote from one of my favorite movies Spirited Away because I really resonate with the message of the quote.”


It is common for the decorated grad caps to include quotes that resonate with students. Whether these quotes are from a favorite show or movie, their favorite musical artist, or even someone they look up to and admire they add a sense of individuality to the decorated caps. 


Some students enjoy decorating the caps because they get to enjoy the time making them that is spent with their other friends who are decorating theirs at the same time.


Senior Veronica Tai-Padron voices that decorating the caps is a really good opportunity to spend time with your friends who you will be splitting ways with very soon. The activity allows her to soak up all these last moments of bonding with her friends before they all part ways and go to different states. 


Not only can decorating be fun, but it is also interesting to look at everyone else’s decorated caps during the commencement ceremony. The various designs are eye-catching to the audience filled with family friends, and supporting faculty of the students. 


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