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University School


Seniors / Parent Information

 Click to Link to Ms. Shaw's Senior Website   Lots of Information!

Watch Graduation Live Stream

The 2018 University School Graduation Ceremony taking place at 7:00 p.m., on Friday, June 1, 2018, in ETSU Brooks Gym, can be viewed live on our University School YouTube channel at the following link:

Watch Live Stream of Graduation

 Graduation on Friday, June 1st, 7:00 p.m., ETSU Brooks Gym

Graduation will be held on Friday, June 1st, at 7:00 p.m., in Memorial Hall (ETSU Brooks Gym), 1127 John Robert Bell Drive, Johnson City, TN 37614.  The event will be streamed live at:
Watch Live Stream of Graduation

Graduation Information


University School will be providing free childcare for any child 12 and under at University School in the 1st Grade Classroom (Room 117).  Childcare will begin at 6:00pm and remain open until 30 minutes after the end of graduation. When dropping off your child before graduation, please allow enough time to complete a form with some basic information in case of emergency or you may print the form from the school’s website or the ATTACHED DOCUMENT and bring it with you when dropping off your child.  Ms. Victoria and Ms. Jordan, both graduate assistants at the school, will be providing the care. Please feel free to contact me at 439-6939 or if you have any questions or concerns.  ENTER THROUGH SIDE PARKING LOT DOOR. MS. VICTORIA OR MS. JORDAN will let you in.


Parking on campus is open (no pass) for our graduation. We respectfully ask that only families with guests who have difficulty walking very far or have requested special seating park in the lot marked PINK on the attached map(between Lamb Hall and Sam Wilson Hall) on Ross Drive. A golf cart will be circling that lot to help shuttle guests to the bottom of the Brooks access ramp. A wheelchair will be available to help some guests maneuver the ramp. Families are also welcome to circle that parking lot and drop off guests in the portion marked YELLOW because it is the closest access point to Brooks. Guests with reserved special seating should enter Brooks through the far right (outer) door and enter the gym through the (inner) right door.



All regular seating will be on the left side of Brooks upper gym (use left or center entrances). Guests with reserved special seating should enter Brooks through the far right (outer) door and enter the gym through the (inner) right door. All guests should be prepared to present a ticket to enter the gym area. Adults should be prepared to submit ID upon request. If you have guests who need to pick up their ticket tomorrow night (WILL CALL), please have you senior leave them with me tomorrow morning with the name of the guest printed clearly in ink on the ticket.


Go to this link  to view graduation live on the internet. The link is already active with a countdown clock! The link will also be posted to the University School Homepage at


Extra Tickets

Students who requested extra tickets at practice or via email today will receive them tomorrow morning.

Senior Schedule for June 1, 2018

7:50 am-Students assemble in Brooks in Cap/Gown for hallway processional

8:10 am-Processional after announcements

8:45 am-Assemble on Brooks front steps for Formal Group Picture

9:00 am-Full Graduation Dress Rehearsal (bring speeches, instruments, back up tracks)

6:00 pm-Graduates assemble in Dr. Penley’s room at Brooks

6:10 pm-Special seating (reserved) begins

6:30 pm-Doors open for regular seating

10:00 pm-Project Graduation Begins



Kudos to our seniors who began their "fun week" of senior activities at Second Harvest Food Bank  So proud of our volunteering bucs!  Go, Class of 2018!

View Photo Gallery

View Photo Gallery of Senior Retreat at Holston Camp


Graduation Tickets

Hi Seniors and Senior Families—

I wanted to let you know that every family will be getting the exact amount of tickets that they requested for graduation. Students will be able to pick up tickets at Graduation Practice on Thursday morning at Brooks or a parent/guardian can pick them up in my office tomorrow. I will not give them to other students because we have had several “lost” envelopes in the past. If you have any changes in your requests for special seating, please let me know ASAP. Guests who require special seating will have reserved seats in the seniors name. All regular tickets are open seating. Special seating will begin at 6:10 pm. Doors will open for regular seating at 6:30 pm. Graduates should report to the holding area between 6pm and 6:15pm.


Ms. Shaw

Calendar Events for Senior Week - May 2018

Dear Senior Families-

We know there has been some confusion about the permission forms for the senior week activities. Sorry about that! In an effort to help ensure that students have the correct permission forms we have made copies of all the correct forms, and seniors should receive those today in one of their classes. If you do not receive a form in a morning class, please drop by to see Ms. Bailiff to get what you need. All forms should be returned to Ms. Bailiff by Friday. The forms are color coded by activity so that students can more easily identify which form goes with which activity. (Forms can also be printed below)

Yellow- Second Harvest Food Bank and Metro Kiwanis Park (return the permission form and complete and submit the Second Harvest Volunteer form online)

Pink- Retreat to Holston Camp

Lime Green-Project Graduation (same form for 11th and 12th graders)

Orange-invitation to juniors to attend Project Graduation (in case you want to invite a junior)


Ms. Shaw

Monday, May 28th

School closed, no events scheduled

Tuesday, May 29th

Second Harvest and Senior Picnic

Leave school around 8:00 a.m., back around noon, then picnic the rest of the school day.

Printable Second Harvest Volunteer Link

Printable Senior Picnic Permission Slip

After the picnic, there will be a short rehearsal for the seniors for Baccalaureate. This will take place at Boones Creek Christian Church at 3:45 p.m.  Please use the church sanctuary entrance.

Wednesday, May 30th

Senior Retreat

Leave school around 8:00 a.m., back around 5:15 p.m.

Printable Senior Retreat Permission Slip

Printable Holston Activity Participation Form

Thursday, May 31st

9:00 a.m.-11:30 a.m. -Graduation Practice in Brooks

7:00 p.m. -Baccalaureate at Boones Creek Christian Church
             Junior Class Setting up at 6:00 p.m.

Friday, June 1st  

Hallway Procession, Cap & Gown Picture, Graduation Practice, and Graduation with Project Graduation to follow at the CPA

     7:50 a.m. -assemble in US Gym wearing cap/gown for Hallway Processional

     8:45 aa.m. -assemble on Brooks Gym Steps in cap/gown for class picture

     9:00 -11:30 a.m. -Graduation Practice in Brooks wearing cap/gown

     6:00 p.m. -graduates assemble in graduation waiting room at Brooks

     6:00 p.m. -doors open for disabled seating

      6:20 p.m. -doors open for regular seating

      7:00 p.m. -Graduation Begins!

     10:00 p.m. - 6:00 a.m. - Project Graduation, CPA

Printable Project Graduation Permission Slip

Dear Families of Juniors,

Junior students are invited to attend Project Graduation for a fee of $10. This allows juniors to spend time with their friends who are in the graduating senior class. Project Graduation takes place after Graduation on June 1. It is an event designed to keep our children safe while celebrating a big milestone in their lives. It is officially a school-sanctioned event, which means that school staff, in addition to Officer Hudson, will be on site and will support parent chaperones. If a student decides to attend Project Graduation, then she/he is committing to staying the  ENTIRE night.

We are very grateful for the school’s support and appreciate the commitment to our children’s safety.


Neil Owen, Kim Bushore-Maki, Patty Wessner, Amy Benton, Michele Somich and Jamie McGill
The Senior Week Parent Planning Committee

Project Graduation Information

Date: June 1, Friday - June 2, Saturday

Time: 10 pm to 6 am   (Doors will be open from 9-10pm; late arrivals will not be allowed in)

Location: ETSU Center for Physical Activity (CPA)

Permission Slip: School permission slip must be signed by parent or guardian.

No outside food or drinks allowed

All backpacks and bags will be checked

Activities: Music, games, swimming, food and drink.

Questions or concerns?: Contact Jamie McGill at 423-741-3211.



Graduation Information and Schedules
Important information from Ms. Shaw:

Dear Senior (Soon to be Graduate) and Senior Family-

I realize that this email is very long, but I am trying to combine several announcements into only one document. Please read and respond where appropriate.

Important Dates/Times

May 24 & 25- Senior Finals

May 28-Memorial Day Holiday

May 29-Second Harvest and Senior Picnic-Bus leaves at 8:00am

May 30-Senior Retreat-Bus leaves at 8:00am-Returns about 5:15pm

May 31- 9:00am-11:30am-Graudtion Practice in Brooks

              7:00pm-Baccalaureate at Boones Creek Christian Church

June 1- 7:50 am-assemble in US Gym wearing cap/gown for Hallway Processional

            8:45 am-assemble on Brooks Gym Steps in cap/gown for class picture

            9:00 am-11:30 am-Graduation Practice in Brooks wearing cap/gown

            6:00 pm-graduates assemble in graduation waiting room at Brooks

            6:00 pm-doors open for disabled seating

             6:20 pm-doors open for regular seating

            7:00 pm-Graduation Begins!


Graduation Tickets

-Senior Complete Survey Below for final ticket requests. Please complete even if you responded to the initial survey.

Seating for Guests with Disabilities

-Senior Complete Survey Below

Senior Information Survey  

- (REQUIRES RESPONSE FROM GRADUATE) Deadline is May 10 @ 3:00pm.

-Complete survey at this link:

Graduation Photography/Videography

-Mr. Wayne Mast will be our professional graduation photographer. You will be able to order class pictures and individual graduation pictures online. Check website in the week following graduation.

-EVA will once again provide live streaming of our Graduation Ceremony. Family and friends will be able to watch the ceremony in real time. Link will not be created until the day before or day of graduation. Please check your email and the US website for that information. Additionally, the recorded video will be posted to the ETSU YouTube channel and the US website in the days following graduation.

What to Wear

Just in case you are wondering what to wear for graduation, I have some suggestions. I recommend a dress that is just a bit shorter than your gown or dark or khaki dress pants. I also recommend wearing low heels. However, if you are planning to wear shoes that you do not typically wear, I would strongly recommend that you wear them for the Cap and Gown Practice on the morning of June 1. Please note that these are only recommendations, not requirements. This is your graduation so you need to be comfortable with what you are wearing, but keep in mind that you are marking an important milestone in your life so it is nice to dress up a bit for the occasion.  Your family and friends will be watching you in person and via a live internet stream.

Your hat should be worn so that the mortarboard is flat on your head (parallel to the ground). This is harder to accomplish than it first seems so you may have to adjust it using bobby pins. You might also find it helpful to fold the front tip under slightly so that it doesn’t come as far down on your forehead. You may want to experiment with different hairstyles with your hat before your big night. The tassel will be worn on the right for your picture and through graduation until Dr. Knechtel tells you to “turn your tassel” to the left—making you official graduates! Be sure that you put your name in your hat so that you can retrieve it after you toss them during the ceremony. I have quite a collection of hats and tassels from previous years.

Please see me if you need to borrow a gown.

Official regalia (cords, stoles, etc.) includes honor cords awarded by the school for 3.5 GPA (also Beta), Tennessee Scholar medallions, valedictorian and salutatorian stoles or cords. No other types of regalia should be worn for graduation. Some exceptions may be made for late transfer students at the discretion of the administration.

Hat Decorating

If you would like to decorate your hat for graduation, please turn in your design to Ms. Day for approval by Wednesday, May 23 at 3:00pm.


-Please complete the Senior Graduation Survey above. Childcare will be provided upon request from 6:00pm to 30 minutes after the end of the ceremony at University School.

-A Childcare Information form will be required and sent at a later date.

Thanks and congratulations!!

Ms. Shaw

PS-Turn in your service hours ASAP!



 Information for graduation invitations/announcements:

June 1, 2018

Memorial Hall
(Brooks Gym)
1127 John Robert Bell Drive
Johnson City, TN 37614


Senior Parent Meeting - Senior Activities Planning

From the Senior Planning Committee:  There will be a brief planning meeting for senior activities on Saturday, February 24th, at 9:30 a.m., in the school cafeteria.  We need to get started on establishing committees for the following events:

• Baccalaureate
• Senior Picnic/Service Project
• Project Graduation

FREE Hot Coffee/Hot Chocolate and Krispy Kreme Donuts!  Yum! 


Dear Seniors and Senior Families-

Thank you so much for your willingness to re-locate graduation to an off campus location. It was a great team effort from all of you! However, several of our stakeholders have urged us to move graduation to an on-campus location because so many of our students have attended school here on our campus for so many years. Graduation will be held at Brooks Gym this year because of the renovation of the Culp Center. We have several details that we have to work out before I can give you final information, but it will be moved. For those of you printing invitations outside of Josten’s, I am working on getting the formal name and address of Brooks so that you can have that for printing. For those of you ordering from Josten’s, I will take care of the change in information.

Thanks so much for your understanding!

Ms. Shaw


Senior Family Committee!

President-                   Neil Owen

Vice-President-           Kim Bushore-Maki

Secretary-                   Patty Wessner

Treasurer-                   Amy Benton



Dear Senior Family-

It is finally time to vote for the committee members who will be in charge of organizing and fundraising for the senior week activities like Project Graduation, Baccalaureate, and Senior Retreat. These individuals will be responsible for creating sub-committees to complete this work and for communication between the school and the senior families. This committee will need many volunteers so think about how you would like to get involved.

Please follow this link VOTE HERE to cast your vote! Votes due by midnight 1/26. Only parents and guardians may vote, and the vote is limited to two votes per family.


Ms. Shaw


Dear Senior Family-

It is time for parents and guardians to begin planning for graduation week activities. Traditionally, parents have provided the funding and organization of the Senior Retreat/Picnic, Project Graduation (lock in), and Baccalaureate. Project Graduation will be held on the night of graduation, and the other activities should be schedule between 5/29-5/31. No activities can be held on 5/28 (Memorial Day) or 6/1 Graduation Day. The Senior Retreat cannot be overnight.

In the past we have sent an email to parents asking them to organize themselves into committees to head the three events. This year we would like to make a few changes that we feel will expedite paper work, payments, and understanding policies and procedures. We want to see the Senior Family Graduation Committee be organized into a formal group that will include a couple of junior parents so that the “torch” can be passed from one year to the next with less confusion and with a better understanding of the process. To that end, the school has named Ms. Bailiff as the School/Committee liaison for all questions, concerns, and paperwork. Additionally, the school has named Ms. Amy Benton as Treasurer of this new committee. Because of her previous experience as the treasurer for the Foundation, we know that Ms. Benton has the requisite skills to help us transition this and subsequent classes into a better organized entity. I will continue to serve as the school’s Graduation Committee Chair.

We would like to begin this process by asking for nominations of Senior Parents/Guardians for the positions of President, Vice President, and Secretary. You may respond to the group email with nominations, or you may email me at privately. Please be sure that your nominee is willing to accept a position before nominating. Once we have a full committee in place, we will ask the committee to schedule a senior parent/guardian meeting (must be approved by Ms. Day) as early as possible in January and to create sub-committees to organize the activities described above—including fundraising. Additionally, the committee will hold elections as soon as possible in January/February to fill a President Elect, VP Elect, and Treasurer Elect from the Junior Parents/Guardians.  The school will donate $1000 as the starter money for the Senior Week activities. The Treasurer will work directly with Mr. Honeycutt to spend these funds according to the requirements of ETSU. New funds earned or donated through the Committee will be held in a committee bank account with Ms. Benton and at least one other committee member as signatories on the account. Any funds remaining in the account after all activity “bills” are settled will pass to the next year’s class.

I know that many of you have organized, raised funds, and led the Senior Graduation Activities in the past. Please know that our intention in making this decision is to help our graduates have the best experience possible. Having been a part of seventeen previous graduations, I know that these changes will be appreciated by school personnel and future senior families!

Let the nominations begin! Deadline for nominations is Tuesday, 12/12 at 10:00pm EST.

All nominations must be made to Ms. Shaw via email.

Thank you for your support!

Ms. Shaw



Picture Day on Monday, September 11th

Picture day is going to be on Monday, September 11th, 2017. Pictures will be made in the library.  

It will also be make up day for Senior Formal Portraits. Ms. Hammonds will be putting out a schedule for seniors to sign up for a time and then will be notified of appointments.

Please note that the Library and Computer Lab will be closed all day on this day, September 11.  This closure also includes the 12:00-1:00 study hall and computer lab periods in the library.



Senior Superlative Nominations Due Thursday, August 31st
Attention Seniors:  It's time to make nominations for Senior Superlatives.  Ballots are available in office and from Ms. Hammonds.  Nominations are due on Thursday, August 31st, to Ms. Hammonds.

Email sent out from Ms. Shaw on Wednesday, August 9th:

Hi Seniors and Senior Parents-

Welcome to Ms. Shaw’s Distribution List! You will be tired or my emails by the end of the year—or maybe before—but I try to only share information that is important to Seniors. If you would like to change your email address, add other members, or be removed just reply to this email. If you note that someone important may be missing, please tell me!

First thing I would like to ask you to do is to explore my senior website at  Most information that seniors need can be found on that website. I welcome your personal visits, emails, and phone calls, but the site can help link you to information when I am not available and provides a kind of one stop shopping area for “senior stuff”.

Important upcoming dates:


            August 1:                    the Common App opened for applications, Tennessee Promise opened for applications


            August 18:                  Late registration deadline for September 9 ACT


            August 31:                  Tri Cities College Fair Field Trip 9-11 @ Freedom Hall, fair opens again 6-8 for parents to visit


            August 31:                  Furman University Visit to University School 12-1 in Room 308


            September 8:              Registration Deadline for next SAT Subject Tests


            October 1:                   FAFSA opens for 2018-2019 applicants


            October 17:                 Seniors take FREE ACT during school day—no registration necessary


            October 27:                 First mandatory Tennessee Promise Meeting @ 8:00am


            November 1:               Deadline to apply for Tennessee Promise


Today all seniors should have received a link in their email to apply for a Parchment account to request transcripts electronically. Students are encouraged to register using the code generated for them. Parents may also create a Parchment account ( to enable them to see student transcripts or request transcripts to be sent. Students who transferred to US this year may not have an updated transcript. New transcripts will be loaded again in January and June for midterm and final transcript reports.


Ms. Shaw


Tri-Cities College Fair on Thursday, August 31st

Hi Seniors-

We will be taking a field trip to the Tri-Cities College Fair on Thursday, August 31st. Buses will leave about 9:15am and return by 11:00am. Parents are welcome to meet you at the Fair, or they can go from 6:00pm to 8:00pm that evening. Please complete the Permission Form with $3 to Ms. Robinson in the Counseling Office by August 27th.

Additionally, I would like you to register for the College Fair by going to and following the directions. Registering for the fair will allow colleges to scan a barcode from your phone or from a print out so that you can immediately express your interest in learning more about their college/university.

Furman University will also be visiting University School on the same day, August 31st, from 12:00pm to 1:00pm, in Room 308. Seniors may attend during their lunch or study hall—just be sure to sign in.


Senior Retreat
Seniors:  The Senior Retreat will be on Friday, July 21st, at Roan Mountain.  Please do not forget to turn in your permission slips and money to the Counseling Office no later than Thursday morning, July 20th.

Go, Bucs Class of 2018!


Civics Test
Civics Test - Required for Graduation Starting with Class of 2017.

This test is required for graduation.  Study materials have been placed on Ms. Campbell's school webpage.



View 2017 Graduation Ceremony on USchool YouTube Channel

I just wanted to let you know that as a senior parent you will have some extra responsibilities this year.  As a part of the Graduation Week (last week of school), the senior parents traditionally arrange an overnight retreat, a senior picnic, the Baccalaureate service and Project Graduation (graduation night lock-in).  The school will donate a small amount of money toward these parent arranged festivities, but the burden of fundraising falls to the parents.  All of the above listed activities are optional, but have become a tradition usually embraced by the senior parents to give the graduates a great finish to high school.  There is no set system in place to organize parent involvement, but usually at least one parent will step forward to begin the process. I am happy to serve as advisor and facilitator for helping you organize Senior Week and to relay information to the seniors. Below, you will find the mandatory graduation activities that I have already scheduled, and other activities should be scheduled around these events.  The person in charge of Project Graduation should see Ms. Robinson ASAP to reserve facilities in the CPA.  I encourage you to begin the conversation soon!



Ms. Shaw




 Link to the 2015 Graduation recording



 Click to View 2014 Graduation Ceremony




   Seniors, don't forget to submit your Contact Information to the Alumni Database!!!  Yes, you made it!!!




Parents of Seniors: Seniors are required to complete 40 hours of community service before they graduate. To date, many seniors have not submitted their forms to Ms. Shaw. This is a state requirement to graduate. Please work with your student to take care of this item.




Ask Ms. Shaw about Duplicate Diploma Requests

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