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Campus Now

Spring Verdure Issue (May)

Waseda rediscovery

cover story

A school flag which leads a procession of tradition

It expands by the click.

Cover Photograph: Yoichi Sato (Visiting Associate Professor at the Art and Architecture School)

The Alma Mater is performed by the orchestra while faculty and staff led by the President proceed forward from the rear of the hall.

This entrance procession, both solemn and brilliant, signals the beginning of the graduation ceremony.

At the head of this procession is the 3rd generation of the Waseda University school flag.

The flag was created in 1982 on the 100th anniversary of Waseda's founding.

The establishment of the school flag was a concept of Principal Sanae Takata (the President was Shigenobu Okuma), as were the educational mission and the ceremonial dress and hat.

The flag was first displayed in 1913 at a celebration of Waseda's 30th anniversary.

On the day of the celebration, this flag led a procession of gown-wearing faculty and staff as they entered the hall.

Seiji Tachibana, Secretary to the Principal described this scene as follows:"Everyone in attendance stood and cheered! The flag and gowns overwhelmed the packed hall, and the crowd prostrated before the messengers of Minerva."Ever since that day, this procession has become a Waseda tradition at ceremonies.