Gonfalons, which are banners hung from crosspieces on poles, have descended from medieval Italy where they were used as symbols of state or office. They have been adopted by many universities and colleges to enhance the ceremonial nature of the commencement exercises.
Plymouth State has created its own gonfalons that feature the university’s colors of dark green and white on the outer nylon panels of each banner. The inner velvet panel of each represents one of our academic departments, using the colors that identify the academic disciplines, as listed below. The bearer of a gonfalon is called a gonfalonier.
Each academic department has honored one graduating student by selecting him/her to carry the department gonfalon in the processional on the field. They will lead the students onto the field, deliver their gonfalon to the platform, and then join the other graduates seated on the field. The names of the gonfaloniers will be listed in the program. If the ceremony is held indoors due to inclement weather, the gonfalons will not be carried. Instead, they will be pre-set on the platform.
Academic Discipline Colors
- Art – Brown
- Atmospheric Science and Chemistry – Golden Yellow
- Biological Sciences – Golden Yellow and Russet
- Business – Drab (Tan)
- Communication & Media Studies – White and Crimson
- Computer Science and Technology – Orange
- Counselor Education and School Psychology – Dark Blue and Light Blue
- Criminal Justice – Purple
- Education – Light Blue
- English – White
- Environmental Science and Policy Peacock – Blue, Golden Yellow, and Russet
- Health and Human Performance – Sage Green and Light Blue
- History and Philosophy – Dark Blue and White
- Language and Linguistics – White and Light Blue
- Library – Lemon Yellow
- Mathematics – Golden Yellow and Light Blue
- Music, Theatre, and Dance – Pink and Brown
- Psychology – Dark Blue and Golden Yellow
- Social Science – White and Citron
- Social Work – Citron
The faculty marshal carries the academic mace at public events such as Commencement exercises and convocations as a symbol of the special stewardship authority and trust reposed in the faculty for the curriculum and academic affairs of the University. The tradition of the academic mace dates back to the late fourteenth century. The PSU mace was designed and created by Philip Lonergan, professor of art, in 2004.