• Eckerd Holds Fifth Annual Pet Graduation

    Ceremony includes certificates and customary ‘walk across the stage’ 

    ST. PETERSBURG, FL (May 3, 2017) – For the fifth time, pets of Eckerd College’s graduating seniors will attend their own special “graduation” ceremony—on Tuesday, May 9, from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at Eckerd College’s Fox Hall, 4200 54th Ave. S., St. Petersburg.

    Species represented in the Pet Class of 2017 include 10 dogs, nine cats, three rats, a snake, a guinea pig, a desert tortoise, a parakeet and a hedgehog.

    Since 1973 when the school first allowed pets on campus, Eckerd College has shown a true commitment to honoring the animals that support our students. This practice has extended to an annual ceremony where pets get to wear a cap, hear their names called and cross the stage to the cheers of friends and family. Vice President for Student Life and Dean of Students James Annarelli will read the pet names while Eckerd College President Don Eastman presents the certificates and has his photo taken with the pet and owner at the ceremony.

    More than 190 furred, feathered and scaled companions have graduated from Eckerd since the school began holding a separate ceremony in 2013. Eckerd College students can live in campus housing with one animal (dogs under 40 pounds, cats, rabbits, ferrets, ducks and chinchillas) or two small pets (fish, hamsters, gerbils, amphibians, nonvenomous reptiles under four feet long and small birds).

    For more information about the ceremony, contact Robbyn Hopewell at (727) 864-7978.