Friday, April 13, 2007

Graduation Gown: Color Codes

Graduation gowns are color coded. Do you know what color your major has?

You might think that the whole color coding system was done since the by gone days but it was standardized only in the US in the late 19th century. Here's a list of which field of learning has what color:

WHITE : was taken from the white fur trimming of the Oxford and Cambridge Arts hoods and was assigned to arts and letters.

RED: is the traditional colors of the church so it went to theology.

GREEN: was the color of medieval herbs so it was adopted for medicine.

OLIVE: since it was so close to green went for Pharmacy.

GOLDEN YELLOW: which stood for wealth where scientific research was produced was assigned for the sciences.

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All of the colors were standardized in 1895 with the help of Gardner Cotrell Leonard when Intercollegiate Commission met at Columbia. The American Council on Education authorized and appointed a committee in 1932 to revise the system. The committee reviewed the situation through correspondence and conference and approved a code for academic costumes that went into effect the same year. By 1959, this committee became the “Committee on Academic Costumes and Ceremonies” and made some changes. Again in 1986 the committee updated the graduation gown color code to use dark blue for the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degree.

To know more and to see the colors that we use currently in colleges check out the wiki page for graduation gowns.

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