[My original post didn't properly post the invitation. The invite should now be embedded. For a very partial reconsideration of my original outrage, see the comment stream. Dave]
Believe it or not, I was planning on going. I have a robe which I spent good money on, and so I try to wear it whenever I can. I rather like ceremonies. And I think our students get a kick out of such things; certainly their joy at graduation, which I make a point of attending whenever I can, is moving. Then I saw the invitation.
The excess word "Chancellor's" in the middle of the invitation, appended to the proper title for this event, "New Student Convocation", tells you everything you need to know about this place. Note also how Chancellor Rita Cheng is singled out in the nice white font. We are invited not to welcome students to SIUC but "to join her" at her new student convocation. I'd be there for a New Student Convocation for our students. But I'll be damned if I show up for a ceremony that seems designed most of all to put another bullet point on the c.v. of Chancellor Rita Cheng (• Established New Student Convocation). Maybe Chancellor Rita Cheng didn't approve the invitation herself. But whoever did it knew well how to ensure that Chancellor Rita Cheng was the center of attention. Welcome to the administrative university.
To tell the Chancellor whether you'll attend her convocation, click here.