FIU Hosts Opening Ceremonies for Spring 2022 Graduation | SehndeWeb

Florida International University student Beatriz Machado, 21, reacts during her graduation ceremony inside FIU's Riccardo Silva Stadium in Miami, Fla., Saturday, April 30, 2022. Machado graduated a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering.

Florida International University student Beatriz Machado, 21, reacts during her graduation ceremony inside FIU’s Riccardo Silva Stadium in Miami, Fla., Saturday, April 30, 2022. Machado graduated a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering.

mocner@miamiherald.com

When Beatriz Machado walked across the stage at graduation and spotted her family holding a bright yellow sign for her from the bleachers, she broke down in tears.

“I was like, ‘Oh my God, this is happening and the most important people are here with me, and they’re watching this live,'” she said, wiping tears from her eyes moments later. come off stage. “I’m just happy, really happy.”

Machado, 21, graduated with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering Saturday morning at Florida International University’s inaugural commencement ceremony for the spring semester.

South Florida’s largest public school will award more than 7,000 degrees this weekend — about 5,400 bachelor’s degrees, 1,100 master’s degrees, 20 specialist and 400 doctoral degrees. Last spring, the CRF granted about 6,500 degrees.

FIU was expecting 4,600 graduates and more than 34,600 total guests to attend the six in-person events held at FIU’s stadium on the main Modesto A. Maidique campus in West Miami-Dade on Saturday and Sunday, the gate said Friday. – FIU spokesperson, Madeline Baro. Despite the rain forecast, the CRF will not cancel any gatherings unless lightning strikes.

Machado, a native of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, moved to Florida at age 14 and enrolled in Montverde Academy, a boarding school in Orlando.

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Florida International University students attend their graduation ceremony inside FIU’s Riccardo Silva Stadium in Miami, Florida on Saturday, April 30, 2022. MATIAS J. OCNER mocner@miamiherald.com

“It was tough. We’ve been away from everyone for seven years. It gives the impression that the efforts paid off,” said Machado, who signed a contract to work for BTG Pactual, a financial company, two days before graduating.

Due to COVID-19 travel restrictions between Brazil and the United States, seeing her uncle, mother and cousin in the audience was special, she said. On the way back to his seat, Machado jumped up, waved, and flashed a heart with both of his hands.

Her relatives lifted the poster they had brought, which read in capital blue letters drawn from sequins:

“The success is yours, but the pride is ours. It was worth all the effort, dedication and moments apart. We are here for you and with you because we love you.

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Florida International University student Beatriz Machado, 21, reacts during her graduation ceremony inside FIU’s Riccardo Silva Stadium in Miami, Fla., Saturday, April 30, 2022. Machado graduated a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering. MATIAS J. OCNER mocner@miamiherald.com

No main speakers, no “OK” roles

The ceremonies will not include any keynote speaker. During Saturday morning, Acting FIU President Kenneth Jessell instead delivered some remarks for the graduates.

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Florida International University Acting President Kenneth A. Jessell, center, arrives at a graduation ceremony inside FIU’s Riccardo Silva Stadium in Miami, Fla., Saturday, April 30, 2022 MATIAS J. OCNER mocner@miamiherald.com

“Class of 2022, now more than ever, you can and should make a difference,” Jessel told them. “This world needs your passion, your knowledge and your commitment.”

The graduates, who hesitated between unpacking their ponchos as the dark clouds above threatened to descend on them, and swallowing bottles of cold water as they fanned themselves to relieve themselves from the scorching sun , applauded.

For some, the message to change their lives and the lives of others resonates.

Jephery Francis, 29, completed a master’s degree in public administration at CRF this spring. Now he feels ready to put into practice what he has learned.

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Florida International University students react during their graduation ceremony inside FIU’s Riccardo Silva Stadium in Miami, Florida on Saturday, April 30, 2022. MATIAS J. OCNER mocner@miamiherald.com

I didn’t go back to school to get an OK role next,” he said. “I know that I will soon be a new leader. My plans are to move on and reach that next level.

Francis, a resident of Miami Gardens, first earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Florida State University in Tallahassee in 2015. At the start of the pandemic, he pursued a bachelor’s degree in public administration from FIU, then his master’s degree. .

While studying full-time at FIU, Francis also worked full-time at the Miami Foundation and managed two businesses he co-owns, a yacht brokerage and a car rental.

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A Florida International University student reacts during her graduation ceremony at FIU’s Riccardo Silva Stadium in Miami, Fla. on Saturday, April 30, 2022. MATIAS J. OCNER mocner@miamiherald.com

“I feel amazing,” he said. “It really feels like a big weight is lifting off my shoulders.”

He sacrificed a lot of birthday celebrations and weekend brunches instead of writing assignments and watching lectures for his online classes. And he is grateful to the faculty and staff at FIU who helped him, he said.

“The program was amazing. I would recommend it to everyone – full-time or part-time,” he said. “It’s definitely made for adults who want to go back to school and further their education. A lot of times people say, “Oh, I don’t have time,” but I had classmates who had kids and were further along in their careers and they all managed to make it work. .

This story was originally published April 30, 2022 2:43 p.m.

Jimena Tavel covers higher education for the Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald. She is a bilingual journalist with triple nationality: Honduran, Cuban and Costa Rican. Born and raised in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, she moved to Florida when she was 17. She earned her journalism degree from the University of Florida in 2018 and joined the Herald shortly after.

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