BROOKINGS, S.D. (KELO) — The weather was just about perfect out on the College Green at South Dakota State University to celebrate spring graduation Sunday.
SDSU graduation ceremonies were moved to the College Green from Dana J. Dykhouse stadium because of the FCS semifinal football game. Normally, the ceremonies are held indoors at Frost Arena, but they shifted outdoors because of the pandemic.
“It’s always a gamble on weather,” SDSU university event coordinator Jamison Lamp said. “There’s certainly some unique opportunities and stunning visuals of being out here on the College Green. For now, the plan would be in future years to move back to Frost Arena, but we’ll continue to revisit and look at all of those things as we move forward.”
The sunny day was especially sentimental for this duo from Rapid City, who took classes together there through SDSU.
“To graduate on Mother’s Day in Nursing Week, I mean, that’s a trifecta,” mom Gabrielle Miller said.
Gabrielle, 48, and Maddie, 23, both graduated from the College of Nursing. Accomplishing that degree included long study nights together and support for each other.
Gabrielle used to be an x-ray tech and wanted to get back into health care. If it weren’t for her daughter, she isn’t sure she could have done it.
“I can’t imagine having done this without her. It just would not have been the same and I don’t know that I would have wanted to do it without her,” she said.
“I think I’ve had more fun with my mom than I have without my mom. You know, she’s good at studying. She’s good at being my best friend alongside all of it,” daughter Maddie said.
“When I walked across the stage and they called her name, I had to stop and turn around, because I wasn’t going to miss watching her walk across the stage,” Gabrielle said. “It’s one of my proudest moments to see my daughter graduate college.”
Gabrielle will now work at Monument Health, while Maddie has accepted a nursing position in Missouri.