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Home | News | UTEP’s Spring Commencement Marks 100-Year Anniversary next Saturday
Photo courtesy UTEP

UTEP’s Spring Commencement Marks 100-Year Anniversary next Saturday

Nearly 2,700 graduates and candidates are eligible to walk the stage during The University of Texas at El Paso’s three Commencement ceremonies Saturday, May 14, in the Don Haskins Center.

The celebrations will be at 9 a.m. for the College of Liberal Arts; 2 p.m. for the colleges of Education, Business Administration and the School of Nursing; and 7 p.m.for the colleges of Science, Engineering and Health Sciences.

The spring ceremonies mark the 100-year anniversary of Commencement. The State School of Mines and Metallurgy, now UTEP, held its first Commencement on May 30, 1916 in the school’s auditorium, located on what is now Fort Bliss. During that first ceremony, three candidates were presented with Engineer of Mines degrees.

“From an educational point of view,” wrote the El Paso Morning Times the next day, “it was probably one of the most important events in the history of El Paso,” since the school not only made El Paso a “University town,” it was also “destined to be one of the greatest technical and professional colleges in the entire West.”

One hundred years later, the University has awarded more than 121,600 degrees in more than 160 fields.

“At UTEP, we believe that the students of our region have just as much promise as students in more affluent settings,” said Amanda Vasquez, Ph.D., assistant vice president for UTEP’s Enrollment Services. “The fact that our graduation numbers continue to climb very much demonstrates that our students not only have promising potential, but that they achieve success. Commencement represents a culmination of students’ success at UTEP and is something for our entire community to celebrate.”

Visit for the latest information about the University’s graduation ceremonies.

Baby strollers, car seats, balloons, noisemakers, glass containers, tripods, selfie sticks, large signs and banners, and food and drinks will not be allowed into the Don Haskins Center during Commencement.

In order to align with the heightened security measures in place at public venues all over the country, Don Haskins Center guests can expect a more extensive security process at the 2016 spring Commencement ceremony. In addition to bag screening, guests will also be screened using a hand-wand device that detects metal objects before entering the Don Haskins Center.

“We are increasing security measures to ensure this event is enjoyable but more importantly, safe,” said Jorge Vazquez, executive director of UTEP Special Events. “We have an obligation as a venue to increase our security measures since more and more venues around the world are adding additional layers of security to ensure the public’s safety.”

Allow extra time for security screening.

The “Mining Minds” pickaxe sculpture at UTEP’s University Avenue roundabout will be illuminated in blue and orange from Wednesday evening, May 11, throughSunday evening, May 15, to commemorate UTEP’s Class of 2016.

“Mining Minds” is an iconic piece of public art installed in 2010 to enhance The University of Texas at El Paso campus. At night, orange lights illuminate the steel structure while light from LEDs emanate from the perforated “ones” and “zeroes” at each end of the pick.

On special occasions, including historic dates, major annual milestones and to celebrate special accomplishments, the pick is illuminated in blue and orange. Learn more about the statue and its artist at

Live Streaming of Commencement Ceremonies

UTEP will stream the Commencement ceremonies live beginning at 9 a.m. for the College of Liberal Arts; 2 p.m. for the School of Nursing and the colleges of Education and Business Administration; and 7 p.m. for the colleges of Science, Engineering and Health Sciences. The livestream is possible thanks to a partnership between the University, KFOX-TV and CBS4.

The livestream can be accessed from any home computer, mobile device or tablet. To view, visit

What: Spring Commencement at The University of Texas at El Paso

When: 9 a.m. for the College of Liberal Arts; 2 p.m. for the School of Nursing and the colleges of Education and Business Administration; and 7 p.m. for the colleges of Science, Engineering and Health Sciences

Where: Don Haskins Center, 151 Glory Road

Parking Information

Parking for candidates:

– Lots P-8, P-9 (accessible from Sun Bowl Drive) and all other general parking areas.

General Parking:

– Free parking accessible from Sun Bowl Drive: Lots R-2, R-5, R-6, P-6 and Sun Bowl Parking Garage

– Parking with estimated $10 fee: Glory Road Transfer Center and Parking Garage (accessible from Glory Road at Mesa Street)

– ADA parking: Lot R-3. ADA parking permit required.

Media Parking:

– Media may park in the R-1 lot.

View a parking map here.

No Miner Metro Shuttle service is scheduled during Commencement.

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