The Legend of the Stole of Gratitude
How does a graduate demonstrate appreciation for a person who helped turn the dream of a college education into a reality? Hasn't every graduate had a special person who, through moral or financial support, made a big difference in his or her life? The Stole of Gratitude offers an opportunity to say, "Thanks for helping me make it through." "Thanks for making it possible for me to succeed." "I didn't do this alone."
The Stole of Gratitude is worn during the commencement ceremony. After the ceremony, the new graduate presents the Stole to someone who provided extraordinary help or support, i.e., parents, relatives, or mentors who have helped with wisdom, words of support, or with financial assistance. Immediately after graduation, the graduate may take the Stole from around his/her neck and place it around the neck of the recipient. More than one Stole may be worn during commencement, symbolizing that there are multiple persons destined to receive this gift.
The Stole may also be worn (or carried) to lunch, dinner, or any special event where a presentation is appropriate. It may be placed around the neck of the recipient with words of thanks and possibly a toast. Recipients will never forget the kindness inherent in the recognition and sentimental feelings connected with being presented the Stole of Gratitude. The fact that it was worn by the presenter during the commencement ceremony adds a very special element to an already touching gesture.
Stoles of Gratitude may be decorated. Presenters often write a few words of love and appreciation on the back of the Stole using a permanent, fine tipped marker. Friends and family of the graduate may autograph the front or back. The Stole of Gratitude is a lasting symbol of love, appreciation, and academic accomplishment.