Decorating mortarboards, time-honored tradition

Photo courtesy: Megan Hsu Cano Some graduates go to unusual lengths to stand out KENNESAW, Ga….

Georgia (May 6, 2015)

Photo courtesy: Megan Hsu Cano

Some graduates go to unusual lengths to stand out

KENNESAW, Ga.  (May 6, 2015) — Graduation time is always a special time of the year. Many friends and relatives get dressed up in style to watch their grads walk the stage and receive their diplomas, so it’s not surprising that some of the grads decorate their mortarboards, or caps, with special sayings and artwork.

Here are a few who are doing just that:

“I’m not positive what I will have on it yet but I am tossing around the idea of something teacher-related for my degree (like an apple), something with my sorority and/or my monogram. I also would like to be easily identified by my family among the many other students graduating,” said Cami D’Anzi of Cartersville, who is graduating with a B.S. in Early Childhood Education.

“I am decorating my mortarboard with a picture of my mom and a letter to her. She came to America by herself for college and raised me by herself. Without her encouragement and compassion, I wouldn’t be where I am today,” said Danita Constable of Decatur, who will graduate with a B.S. in Integrative Studies with a concentration in PR and Music and Entertainment Business. 

Ruth Lauture grew up in Stamford, Conn., and is graduating with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing. “I have accepted a position with Coca-Cola and will have the privilege of working in Haiti, which is my parents’ native country. I’m decorating my cap with the saying, “I MEAN Business.”

“In place of the nondescript, black exterior of the cap, I will use fabric ink/paint to draw a line design of an owl in metallic gold and silver. I will also write in block lettering, on the top edge of the mortarboard, “KSU ’15,” said Jocelyn Rease, a 24-year-old Art Education major from Marietta.

“Yes, I am decorating my cap for graduation. I put ‘Gracias Mami Y Papi’ on it, which means ‘thank you mom and dad.’ My family and I are from Colombia, and my parents have helped me get through college in so many ways, so I thought I'd surprise them with the graduation cap in Spanish!” said Megan Hsu Cano, an Industrial Engineering Technology major who is graduating Saturday at the Marietta campus.

Another Marietta campus graduate, Nicole Sullivan, said, “For my cap, I wanted to do something witty and non-traditional. I searched on different sites like Pinterest and Facebook connections to find different ideas. After searching, I found a quote from the movie ‘Legally Blonde’ that said ‘What, like it’s hard?’ referring to her acceptance to Harvard Law School. I decided on this quote because I go to a male-dominated engineering school, even though I am majoring in fashion. I used glittery pink scrapbook paper and used pink measuring tape for the edges. After putting on the quote, I placed a green bow in the middle in honor of graduating from SPSU with my sorority letters and graduation year.”

— Robert S. Godlewski


















Commencement 2015


A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its nearly 43,000 students. With 11 colleges on two metro Atlanta campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the country and the world. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), placing it among an elite group of only 6 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status. For more information, visit