Ring Out, Passing of the Key Ceremonies To Be Held May 2

May 2, 2006

by Lori Fogleman, director of media relations, (254) 710-6275

Two of Baylor University's pre-commencement traditions - Ring Out and the Passing of the Key - will be held at 4:30 p.m. today (Tuesday, May 2) in Burleson Quadrangle. In the event of inclement weather, the ceremony will be in Rena Marrs McLean Gymnasium.

An annual tradition since 1927, the Senior Ring Out Ceremony signifies the passing of the guardianship of the Baylor spirit.

Historically, the ceremony has included primarily women. Graduating senior women, dressed in traditional graduation gowns, pass a chain of ivy to junior women wearing white. Forming a circle near the Baylor bells in Burleson Quadrangle (the smaller bell from Baylor's first campus at Independence, Texas, and the larger bell from Waco University where Baylor now exists), the seniors pass the charge of leadership to the next graduating class.

Since 1946, the men of the senior and junior classes have participated in the Passing of the Key of the Key ceremony during Ring Out. Senior men are in graduation gowns and junior men are dressed in dark suits. A representative of the senior class, who has been designated the "Custodian" of the key to the box of relics buried under the Centennial monument in the center of Founders Pleasance, passes the key to a junior representative. As with Ring Out, the ceremony symbolizes the binding of classes in loyalty to the traditions of Baylor.

As graduates and families move from Ring Out to the Ring Ceremony in Waco Hall, University Carillonneur Lynnette Geary will perform a recital on the 48-bell McLane Carillon, located in the tower of Pat Neff Hall.

The Baylor Alumni Association will host the annual Ring Ceremony at 5:30 p.m. today in Waco Hall. Baylor President John M. Lilley will present senior rings to students, who then will learn the history and meaning of the more than a dozen historic symbols on the ring.

For more information about Baylor's senior ring, go to https://www.baylor.edu/alumni/index.php?id=965327.

Baylor will hold two spring commencement ceremonies on Saturday, May 13 - at 9:30 a.m. for graduates from the College of Arts and Sciences and related graduate programs, and at 2:30 p.m. for graduates from the schools of Business, Engineering and Computer Science, Education, Music, Nursing, Social Work and related graduate programs.

Commencement for graduates of Baylor's George W. Truett Theological Seminary will be held at 6 p.m. Friday, May 12, in the Paul W. Powell Chapel at Truett Seminary.

For more information about commencement, go to https://www.baylor.edu/commencement.