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Raul's Report

The Finish Line 

Spring. Commencement. Just saying those two words gets me pumped up and even a little emotional. Here at CU Denver we talk a lot about how we start our students out with the end in mind, and more than 1500 students will proudly walk across their finish line, our Commencement stage, this month. Getting them there is a testament to the support you provide as student affairs professionals.

Biggest Commencement Ceremony ever

This will be the largest Spring Commencement Ceremony in the history of CU Denver and the Events & Partnerships team can use your help to pull it off. Please plan to carve out some time either Friday, May 12 or Saturday, May 13 to be a commencement volunteer. Just email Zack Strober for your assignment and details.

Make a difference for disabled students

Of course, the thrill of Commencement Saturday is preceded by the mad rush of final exams week. It’s always a busy time, especially for our Disability Resources and Services team (DRS). The disability team provides disability-related accommodations year-round for more than 900 students. During finals, that means helping to administer and proctor exams, and that’s where you come in. Please check your calendar for the week of Monday, May 8 through Friday, May 12 and schedule time to be a DRS volunteer. Email Danielle Becerra or call 303-315-3510 for details and to volunteer. I thank you for your efforts and so do our students.

Final chance to read scholarships

And, on the subject of volunteers, wow! Thanks to all of you who’ve volunteered to read scholarship applications. Your hours spent reviewing the submissions has made a world of difference for the Scholarship Services and Programming team and for our students who will be awarded the scholarships. But, our work’s not finished. There’s still one more reading session scheduled for Friday, May 5 and it’s not too late to participate. I encourage as many of you as possible to sign up online for your best time. I know from my own experience how rewarding it is to help our hard-working students receive the scholarship funds they’ve earned. Please contact Melanie McLaren with any questions.

Proud of our graduates

Which brings me back to Commencement and the emotions that come along with it. It seems like a piece of our hearts leaves with each student as they graduate. But, any sadness I feel is overwhelmed by the sense of pride I take in their accomplishment and the role each or you played in their success.

Spotlight on students

If you need a reminder of how our support helps, we’ve got two great examples right here in “The Connection” newsletter. Look for CU Denver’s David Heisler and the crazy cycling adventure he’s scheduled for himself this summer, and Anowara Begum, a CU Anschutz student from Bangladesh who served as president of the campus’ International Student Group in the "What's New" section.

See you at our conference!

Your efforts, your support programs and your guidance have a huge impact on our students’ positive experiences. And, when we all get together for our Division of Student Affairs Conference: Creating a Culture of Collaboration on Wednesday, May 31, we’ll learn about new ways we can team up for student success. Register now and I’ll see you there.

Let’s celebrate our students and enjoy the month!


Raul Cardenas, PhD, Vice Chancellor, CU Denver | Anschutz Division of Student Affairs


Please contact Bonnie Hixson​ to schedule a time to meet​​​


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