August commencement exercises will be the first events in the newly opened Pinnacle Bank Arena in Lincoln’s Haymarket area.
The arena, at 400 Pinnacle Arena Drive, immediately west of Lincoln’s central post office at Eighth and R streets, will host a ceremony for students earning graduate and professional degrees at 3 p.m. Aug. 16 and one for those earning bachelor’s degrees at 9:30 a.m. Aug. 17. Approximately 775 degrees will be awarded, about evenly divided between the two ceremonies. The ceremonies will be live streamed at http://www.unl.edu.
The Aug. 17 ceremony will include 57 May bachelor’s degree recipients who accepted UNL Chancellor Harvey Perlman’s invitation to participate in the August ceremony after the May 4 commencement exercises in Memorial Stadium were canceled because of inclement weather.
Jay Storz, associate professor of biological sciences at UNL, will deliver the address at the Aug. 16 ceremony. Lance Morgan, co-founder, president and chief executive officer of Ho-Chunk Inc. will deliver the Aug. 17 commencement address and receive the Builder Award, recognizing his service to the state and university. Ho-Chunk Inc. is the award-winning economic development corporation owned by the Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska. Morgan was originally scheduled to receive the Builder Award in May.
The ceremonies are free and open to the public, and no tickets are required. Visitors will enter the arena through the south entrance onto the concourse level and will have open seating in all areas except the arena floor, which will be reserved for graduates, faculty and dignitaries. Handicap seating will be on the concourse level. Open captioning for people with hearing impairment will be provided through the ribbon screens at the corners of the arena concourse level.
For Pinnacle Bank Arena seating charts, go to http://www.pinnaclebankarena.com/tickets/seating.html.
Concession stands will not be open, but bottled water will be available for purchase. Guest services and first aid will be on level three at gate 112.
Limited parking will be available in the Haymarket area, so UNL officials urge graduates, families and friends to park for free in the UNL parking garage at 14th Street and Salt Creek Roadway northeast of Memorial Stadium or the surface lot immediately to the west of the garage. Free shuttle buses, including handicap-accessible shuttles, will run between the garage and Pinnacle Bank Arena beginning at 1 p.m. on Aug. 16 and at 7:30 a.m. on Aug. 17, and continuing until two hours after ceremonies have finished each day. A map for the garage location is available at http://go.unl.edu/mc8. In addition, on Aug. 17 only, all UNL campus parking lots will be available without charge.
Paid parking, including handicap parking, is available in two garages in the vicinity of the arena: the Premium Parking garage at Gate P on Arena Drive for $5, and the Red No. 1 garage at 555 R St. for $3. Both ceremonies will be conducted during open hours for Haymarket businesses, while the Aug. 17 ceremony will be at the same time as the Historic Haymarket Farmers’ Market in the immediate vicinity of the arena.
There are 19 handicap accessible parking spaces in the Red No. 1 garage at $3 per vehicle and 10 handicap accessible parking spaces in the Premium Parking garage at $5 per vehicle. There are also free handicap accessible parking spaces in the garage at 14th Street and Salt Creek Roadway, and a handicap accessible shuttle will run between the garage and the arena.
— Tom Simons, University Communications