When Kenneth Lauzier, supervisor of landscape and grounds, was asked recently if he could provide any information that illustrates the hard work he and his team have been doing to help prepare the College for Commencement on May 28, he offered numbers related to beautifying campus, collecting student donations and setting up for the weekend’s activities, among other efforts. (More on that below.) But he also offered a data point pertaining to his crew’s energy levels.
“Commencement comes every 52 weeks whether we’re ready for it or not,” he said. As such, it’s reasonable to estimate that his team drinks hundreds of gallons of coffee to “maintain alertness” throughout Commencement season, he noted wryly.
The caffeine consumption of Lauzier’s team is of course not uncommon this time of year. Given the all-hands-on-deck approach to coordinating an Amherst Commencement, many fellow employees are likely sipping coffee at increased rates. Members of the community devote innumerable hours to cooking meals, scrubbing floors, grading papers, writing inspirational speeches, rolling diplomas and so much more. It’s hard to quantify the time–or the care, for that matter–that goes into pulling off the College’s annual celebration for the graduates, but we’ll give it a shot.
Here are just a few numbers related to Amherst’s 2023 Commencement Weekend and, most importantly, the graduating seniors themselves.