Chris –


At the University of Michigan-Flint, and as a part of the University of Michigan system, there is no prescribed formal written policy about opening/closing prayers at commencements or any other significant university-sponsored events. I quickly checked with the UM-Flint Vice Chancellor for Student Services and Enrollment Management, our Human Resource and Affirmative Action office and I did an online search for any hits on “religion” and “prayer” in the UM “Standard Practice Guide” and could not identify any specific policies on this matter other than the usual non-discrimination statements regarding religion. At the same time, the practice is that at times when it might seem otherwise appropriate for any kind of spiritual or religious practice to take place, the approach is simply to allow for a “moment of silence” to allow for each person to pray, or not, on his/her own.


Otherwise, in the more than 12 years that I’ve attended commencement exercises here at UM-Flint (and I haven’t missed a winter or spring commencement yet), we have never had an opening or closing prayer.


I hope this helps.


Have a restful and enjoyable holiday break!!!



Mr. Tendaji W. Ganges
Assistant to the Chancellor and
Executive Director
Educational Opportunity Initiatives
University of Michigan-Flint
University Center - Suite 280
303 East Kearsley Street
Flint, MI 48502-1950
Voice and Voice Mail: 810-762-3365
Facsimile: 810-762-3190
Email: [log in to unmask]

From: Retention & Graduation Issues Concerning Minorities in Higher Education [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Redmond, Rudy (DLEG)
Sent: Monday, December 10, 2007 1:10 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: MTU Question


Hello from the Upper Peninsula, would you mind responding to me with

a brief explanation of your university's policy and action/s

concerning prayer at the beginning of your commencement ceremonies?  I

was asked to benchmark with our Michigan colleagues and I thought that

this list might provide some great ideas as well as specific response

to the question.  Thank you in advance.  Chris



Chris S. Anderson

Special Assistant to the President for Institutional Diversity

Michigan Technological University

1400 Townsend Drive

Houghton, MI 49931


Telephone: 906/487-3539

Fax: 906/487-3101

Email: [log in to unmask]