An essay by Dr. Jennifer Sasser, gerontology program director, was published in the International Journal of Reminiscence and Lifelong Learning in January 2015.
This special hooding ceremony adds to the graduation experience by making it possible to focus on advanced degree candidates and their accomplishments. It allows graduate faculty and staff, family and friends a chance to witness the ceremonial hooding of the graduate student in a more intimate setting.
NOTE: This special hooding ceremony does not take the place of commencement. Graduate students are encouraged to celebrate their achievement by walking in commencement.
History and Significance of the Graduate Hood
The origins of academic dress date back to the 12th and 13th centuries, when universities were taking form. The hood that forms part of today's academic dress was originally a head covering for bad weather. Later it was dropped to the shoulders in the form of a small cape. Eventually, the hood became a separate piece of apparel bearing even more symbolism than the gown. Today, hoods are the most expressive component of the academic costume. They serve to communicate the owner's school, degree and field of study through their length and the colors of the lining and binding.
Today's hoods have evolved from a serviceable article of clothing to a type of elongated scarf draped over the shoulders and displayed down the back with the lining turned inside out.
Marylhurst University master's degree graduates and candidates receive their hood because of the level of education they have pursued beyond the baccalaureate degree. The Marylhurst University's colors are blue and gold, hence these colors on the hood. The velvet trim on the hood signifies the scholar's field.