Skip to Top Navigation Skip to Content Skip to Footer
aerial view of the Husson University campus

Hooding Ceremony to Celebrate Husson Graduate Students’ Achievements

Published on: May 5, 2022

student standing with Husson staff and faculty during hooding ceremony

BANGOR, MAINE – The next generation of scholars and professionals who earned their master’s and doctoral degrees from Husson will be honored during a hooding ceremony at the Newman Gymnasium on the University’s campus in Bangor at 7:00 p.m. on Friday, May 6, 2022. Husson estimates that 1,000 – 1,200 people will be in attendance. 

Students earned 338 graduate degrees and certificates this year. This includes 65 doctoral degrees, 264 master’s degrees and nine post-master’s degree certificates. 

According to Dr. Robert A. Clark, president of Husson University, “Earning a hood signifies that the recipient has met the requirements of an advanced degree program and is now considered a scholar. The hood’s length, lining colors and binding signify the degree, field of study and the individual school where the graduate earned his, her or their master’s or doctorate.” Clark concluded, “The event is filled with significance and recognizes those individuals who have reached the summit of professional education.”

During a hooding ceremony, faculty and students are dressed in academic regalia. Faculty members place the hood over the head of the graduate to signify his, her or their success in completing their degree.

History of Hooding:

The wearing of special gowns and hoods is a practice that dates back to the 12th and 13th centuries.[1] Clerical attire was the typical dress of scholars during those medieval times.[2] Long gowns provided necessary warmth in unheated buildings. Hoods as head-coverings helped students and faculty members resist the cold.[3] The Celts and their priests, the druids, initiated the wearing of hoods to distinguish a level of training.[4] Only the druids wore mantles with attached hoods to mark their superiority within society.[5]

Today, caps, gowns and hoods are associated with college graduation. Instead of being practical clothing, modern academic hoods consist of elongated scarves draped over an individual’s shoulders with the lining turned inside out.[6] Although a hood is always black in color, the lengths have significance. A graduate earning a bachelor’s degree receives a hood that’s three feet long.[7] A master’s degree graduate receives a hood that’s three and one-half feet in length while four-foot hoods are given to doctoral recipients.[8]

Chesley H. Husson, Sr. Award

Each year, a prominent professional receives the Chesley H. Husson Sr. Award as part of the Husson University’s hooding ceremony.

The award is named for Chesley H. Husson Sr., the founder of Husson College, one of the University’s predecessor institutions. He believed in academic integrity, hands-on education and community service. His philosophy of combining education and real-world business experience in the classroom continues to be an important academic focus at today’s Husson University. 

First presented in 2001, some of the people who have received this award include:

  • Susan Collins, United States Senator
  • Jeannine Gutman, Editor, Portland Press Herald
  • Takfumi Kimura, Education Leader, Japan
  • Phil Harriman, former State Senator, Community Volunteer
  • Michael Brennan, Chief of Police, Portland
  • Charles Miller, Attorney, Community Volunteer
  • Steve Rowe, Former Attorney General, State of Maine
  • Bill Green, Television Personality, Writer and Environmental Champion
  • Mike Sanphy, Mayor of Westbrook
  • Edward O. Darling, Owner, Downeast Toyota
  • Teresa Willett Steele, Professor Emerita
  • Dewey Martin, Professor Emeritus

The name of this year’s award recipient will be divulged at the hooding ceremony on May 6.

About Husson University:

For more than 120 years, Husson University has shown its adaptability and strength in delivering educational programs that prepare future leaders to handle the challenges of tomorrow through innovative undergraduate and graduate degrees. With a commitment to delivering affordable classroom, online and experiential learning opportunities, Husson University has come to represent a superior value in higher education. The hallmarks of a Husson education include advanced knowledge delivered through quality educational programs. According to a recent analysis of tuition and fees by U.S. News & World Report, Husson University is one of the most affordable private colleges in New England. For more information about educational opportunities that can lead to personal and professional success, visit

[1] “Academic Regalia: Historical Overview of the Academic Costume Code,” American Council on Education (ACE),

[2] Ibid

[3] Ibid

[4] “Graduation Cap and Gown History,”

[5] Ibid

[6] “Significance of the Graduate Hood,” University of Alaska Anchorage,

[7] “Academic Regalia in the United States,” Wikipedia,

[8] Ibid

Back to All Articles