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MISSOULA, Mont. (AP) — The University of Montana has eliminated individual graduation ceremonies for academic departments in favor of two larger ceremonies.

The Missoulian reports the university will hold a morning and an afternoon commencement ceremony in May with the university’s schools divided among the two.

In a memo Tuesday, university officials say the changes aim to retain the celebration and recognition of the graduates while addressing financial constraints.

Assistant to the president Rebecca Power says the university in the past has spent up to $85,000 on ceremonies, which includes costs such as equipment rentals, printing and regalia rentals. The university projects the changes will keep the costs to under $50,000.

The university will still hold a separate ceremony for doctoral candidates in philosophy, education, pharmacy and physical therapy.


Information from: Missoulian,