Berger Partnership | Commencement Walk


Title: Commencement Walk

Project: University of Puget Sound Commencement Walk

Firm: Berger Partnership

Summary: The University of Puget Sound in Tacoma celebrated Convocation for the incoming class of 2015 with a procession down the recently completed Commencement Walk. This isn’t the first class to participate in this Puget Sound University tradition, but it is the first to travel a pathway designed specifically to honor the ceremony.

The name Commencement Walk is derived from a traditional journey each Puget Sound graduating class takes as it gathers for commencement in a procession from Karlen Quad to Baker Stadium. Convocation, meaning a group of people formally assembled for a special purpose, acknowledges the beginning of the school year. As part of the ceremony, freshmen travel in the opposite direction and are welcomed by upperclassmen, faculty and staff lining the walk.

Built to last for the next hundred years, the granite pathway begins at Collins Library and is flanked with bronze markers stamped to commemorate graduating classes dating back to 1893. It then passes what is known as the Color Post, a stately obelisk which aptly displays the representative colors and primary disciplines taught at the University. Next along the path is Benefactor Plaza, also recently renovated, and from there the pathway continues to the new Event Lawn, which is roomy enough to host large tents for fundraisers and other celebratory occasions. The journey ends at Baker Stadium, where Convocation begins and graduation commences.