A graduation gradient

Students flipping their tassels as they graduate. Photo taken in 2016.

Weber State University’s graduation commencement ceremony is taking place on Dec. 16 at the Ogden campus. When attending, one may notice graduating students wearing different colored tassels with their cap and gown. These differing colors signify the different colleges at the university.

The history behind wearing colored tassels at graduation dates back to the 14th century. European universities used them to signify specific academic achievements and exploits.

At WSU, these tassels help show what each graduate studied, celebrating their accomplishments and experiences made during their education.

Graduates wearing orange tassels completed one of the following degrees; master or bachelor of computer or electrical engineering or an associate of pre-engineering.

White tassels are given to those who complete an arts and humanities degree or earn a Master’s of English. Master’s of Professional Communications will receive crimson tassels.

Business and economics degrees wear a brown tassel. The same goes for Master’s of Business Administration, Accounting and Taxation. Those who got bachelor’s and master’s degrees in education wear light blue. Health professions, masters of nursing, nurse practitioner and radiology wear apricot colored tassels.

Students who complete degrees in Respiratory Therapy, Athletic Training or Athletic Therapy receive sage green tassels.

Salmon is reserved for Bachelor’s degrees in Public Health or Health Administrative Services and Master’s of Health Administration. Science degrees get to wear yellow tassels and Master’s of Criminal Justice wear citron.

Cream is for social behavioral sciences and Bachelor’s of interdisciplinary studies, a purple and white combination is worn by students who have completed associates degrees in general studies.

These days, the main purpose of the tassel is to turn it from one side of the graduation cap to the other. This signifies that the student is going from a candidate to a graduate. The tassel will often have a charm with it to show the year that the student graduated.