Thursday, May 28, 2009


We're finally here. We made it. Graduation.

Introducing: Dr. Travis J Hunsaker

The graduation ceremonies were spread out over two days, Saturday May 16th and Sunday May 17th.

Hooding Ceremony

The Hooding Ceremony is a recognition ceremony for doctoral degrees where someone who has graduated in that field bestows the hood on the new graduate. Each degree has its own color. For dentistry it's lilac. The colors that line the inside of the hood are those of the university where the degree was obtained.

For Travis, his Dad will do the honors. Some students use faculty and/or a mentor from school, some students had multiple family members, a dad, grandpa, and a couple brothers in one case!

The Hooding Ceremony was Saturday evening and Marquette University School of Dentistry holds it's hooding ceremony at the beautiful Church of the Gesu on campus in downtown Milwaukee.

Waiting to get started

The hoods

They're up next!

Ben hoods Travis

After they were all hooded and honors and awards given they lined up for a class picture.
Travis is the tall guy in the back, third from the right.

After the picture, the doctors who did the hooding lined the center aisle to
congratulate the students as they filed through. Here's Travis as he emerged:

Showing off their hood colors.

After the hooding ceremony we walked back to the dental school where a reception was held. My parents, Travis' parents and his brother Kevin had all already toured most of the school on previous visits, but none of us had seen in the clinic where Travis worked. It was fun to see where Travis had spent his time the last two years of school.


Commencement was held at the Bradley Center Sunday morning. We had great seats, front row behind the band, and it turned out that the dental school seating was right there on that side, just a few rows back.

Since we did have a good, close location, Travis spotted us right away.
Notice the teeth on the mortar board? Tradition.
How exciting, to be there, seated amongst all his friends, ready to be announced doctors.

After they were announced as doctors (that is the moment they can be called by Dr.)
they went wild. This is what 144 cans of silly string looks like. They also had air horns.

Dental School Luncheon

The luncheon came right after the commencement and was held at the Phister Hotel, the same place we had the winter ball. Since I didn't make it down to the lobby that time, I made sure to go and take some pictures after the luncheon.

At the start of the lunch, the new doctors lined up outside the ballroom doors
and were announced into the room as a class. They had a processional up to
the front where we applauded them and another class picture was taken.

After eating lunch it was time for the new doctors to line up to receive their diplomas.

Avery was thrilled with the waiting.

Here's video of Travis when it came his turn:

Some while back the students received a paper on which to write exactly how they wanted their
name to appear on their diploma and other printed items for the ceremony. Travis didn't just
write his name, he gave instructions. "NO period after the J" All things printed by the dental
school were correct, but everything printed by Marquette was wrong. Including the diploma.
We give them all that money for school and they can't even type up his diploma correctly. Sheesh.
After taking the incorrect one in to request a new one, Travis had
to wait many weeks for the corrected one to arrive in the mail.

And here it is, the most expensive piece of paper I've ever seen:

When the luncheon was over, we gathered with the rest
of our good friends in a side room to get some pictures.

Are they really doctors?

Okay, here's the nice picture
Dr. Todd Lyman, Dr. Eric Rosengren, Dr. John Gilbreth, Dr. Travis Willey, Dr. Robert Rahm,
Dr. Travis Hunsaker, Dr. Jessica Spencer, Dr. Jared Nelson, Dr. Guy Leavitt and Dr. Aaron Salmon

The wives (we were missing Kristin Leavitt who had to run her parents to the
airport. We did take some "spouse" pictures too, so Mike could be included)
Jenni Gilbreth, Erin Lyman, Laurie Hunsaker, Kristel Salmon,
Wendy Nelson, RaQuelle Willey, Amy Rahm and Sherri Rosengren

Most of the kids. Carson refused.

The happy family. Still in shock that we're finished.

After pictures it was time to say goodbye. Because we were moving
the very next day, there would be no other goodbyes for us.

And before we could leave, the boys had to play the piano.

Congratulations Travis! You did it!


Wisconsin Willeys said...

Congrats on graduating! Already feels like so long ago. what a great day though!

Mom said...

I love that photo of the boys playing the piano.

Congratulations Travis. It will be nice to soon have the money going in the other direction.....or at least some of it.

Bill and Maggie said...

I loved this post Laurie! Congratulations to you all!

Mom H said...

It may seem even more for Travis, but as his mom, I have waited a long time for this time to come. He was about 12 of 13?? when he decided to follow in his dads shoes and become a dentist. He never faltered in his goal. I (we) am extremely proud of him and all he has endured to achieve his goal. WELL DONE TRAVIS!! The toughest years(dental school) were made easier with the help of his loving wife and kids.
Love you guys!