More than 1100 students this week walked through Joyes Hall, they sat in the same seats and wore the same gowns as thousands of graduates before them but the process meant something different for each student.
This week marks the end of years of hard work and study before just a few little words to turned graduands into graduates of Charles Sturt University (CSU).
Students celebrated with elated posts on social media and meals surrounded by family and friends at various establishments.
Head of Campus Miriam Dayhew has officiated each of the six graduation ceremonies in Wagga this week.
And while it may seem tiring watching hundreds of people parade past you each day, Mrs Dayhew said it is a highlight on her calendar.
“I love it,” she said.
“I never tire of it … although I’m thankful that this year was not as hot as last year.
“We’ve had fantastic occasional speakers who have given words of wisdom, who have urged students to use their new qualifications widely and wisely.”
Mrs Dayhew has been officiating the graduations for three years and marvels at the diverse range of students, and their footwear, that parade past her.
“I always look at their shoes,” she said.
“There are people who have never worn high heels before who totter past.”
But it is not just the footwear of the graduates that Mrs Dayhew is impressed with.
She said students come from a range of cultural backgrounds, with many travelling across the globe to attend their ceremony.
The incorporation of cultural dress, whether it be a Kiwi feather cloak from New Zealand or traditional grass skirt from Samoa, brings a smile to Mrs Dayhew’s face.
“It was just beautiful to see that included in the ceremony,” she said.
“It’s delightful to see people’s individualities.”
Mrs Dayhew said that just because CSU turns out a high number of graduates each year, does not mean that they do not value each and every one.
She praises Vice Chancellor Andrew Vann for the time he takes to talk to the graduates while they cross the stage to shake his hand.
“Graduation is personal to them (students) and that resonates with us,” she said.
“It gives us all goosebumps.”
It was through one of these conversations that they discovered a descendent of Charles Sturt was graduating this year.
Mrs Dayhew has also been the university’s ombudsman for almost 10 years.
“It’s nice to see people whose problems have come across my desk make it to graduation,” she said.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.