University of Ottawa law students want convocation moved
University of Ottawa law students are asking that their convocation ceremony next summer be moved, saying they will be unable to attend if it isn't rescheduled.
Cullen Schreiter is graduating. He is the first person in his family to go to law school. “A lot of students that are writing the bar outside of Ottawa and won’t be able to attend. A lot of people won’t have their families coming to convocation because they will be studying.”
The law school's convocation ceremonies are currently scheduled for June 16, 2019, two days before the Ontario bar exam.
Students say this is too close to the major test. Rebecca de Sancitis would have family coming from out of town. “You don’t have a lot of time to study for the bar... it’s a make or break licensing exam. It would be unnecessary stress.”
At a standing-room-only meeting on Wednesday on campus, third-year law students - some nearing tears - expressed their concerns to law school dean Adam Dodek.
Al Petkovic is a graduating student. He is writing his bar exam in British Columbia at a later date- but says he is boycotting convocation in solidarity with his classmates. “I don’t think it is a grandiose demand to ask for convocation to have all their family members attend and cry for happiness.”
Dean Adam Dodek said he understood the students' concerns and is going to discuss possibilities with the university registrar.
Dodek says it there are challenging to changing something only a few months away. The Shaw Centre has been booked for three years and the University only gives a 4 days window for all convocations to take place.
He says he will be looking at other possibilities. “What we heard from students is the desire to revisit that decision which I undertook to do and to see what possibilities in that frame or outside are possible.
Dodek says the common law faculty usually shares graduation with the civil faculty. But will also speak to the dean of civil law about having separate convocations.
- With files from CTV's Leah Larocque