By Layne Palmer
A great idea has gotten even better: Ohio University's second annual Graduation Fair -- designed to help graduating seniors easily navigate the graduation process -- has been extended to two days and moved earlier in the school year.
Graduation Fair 2009: Countdown to Commencement will take place from 2 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 24, and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 25, in the Baker University Center Ballroom.
The Office of University Events offers the event to provide a convenient "one-stop shop" for all things graduation: Students can order caps and gowns, apply for graduation, order graduation announcements and interact with numerous campus departments to learn more about the graduation process and life after college.
Among the many departments involved are the Ohio University Alumni Association, Career Services, Financial Aid and the Registrar's Office.
Marisa Grill, a junior majoring in organizational communication, is organizing the fair in her role as an Office of University Events special projects coordinator.
"We started planning this event as early as possible, especially because we decided to hold it earlier than we did last year," Grill said. "It is important for graduating students to attend because there are a lot of details associated with graduation, and this event allows students to get everything done at one time."
Grill said several community vendors -- a new addition this year -- are signed up to participate. They will include local hotels that will take reservations for graduation weekend and bookstores that can provide graduation announcements.
"That's great," Grill said, "because we would like as many people there as possible to serve as resources for students."
Grill said students' responses to a survey at last year's fair drove the decision to expand the event and hold it earlier in the school year.