June is a special time at UCLA. It marks the end of another academic year and the start of a new stage in life for thousands of graduating students. For UCLA Conferences and Catering (C&C), it is a time to shine as they give their all to make graduation celebrations and events memorable.
“This is an incredibly special time for our campus,” said C&C Director Samantha Chan. “Many of our students attended Bruin Day and other events with their families as they were preparing to start their academic journey at UCLA. Our graduation events are a nice way to close this chapter and honor their time with us here in Westwood.”
Over the course of six intense days, the team worked to stage and support 30 events for groups ranging from 50 to 1,500, said Chan. Most were held June 16 and 17.
With so many events in such a short period of time, the team designs specific commencement menu packages with input from the Commencement Committee, which coordinates all commencement ceremonies and is comprised of departmental planners from throughout UCLA. From charcuterie boards, desserts – including 30,000 cookies – and signature punch, some of the most popular items served at these sorts of events, everything is made in-house with an emphasis on seasonal ingredients sourced from local farmers.
This year’s graduating ceremonies celebrated the accomplishments of 9,000 undergraduate students and more than 5,000 graduate students. Speakers included actor, comedian and UCLA alumnus Randall Park, who spoke at three UCLA College ceremonies, Los Angeles Mayor Karen Bass who delivered the keynote at the UCLA Anderson School of Management; and Paul Krekorian, president of the Los Angeles City Council, who addressed graduates of the UCLA International Institute.