Filipino graduation leis and its rising popularity

    Graduation season in the Philippines would usually fall around the month of March, but because of the pandemic school calendars have been adjusted. Schools all over the country are now conducting its own version of graduation ceremonies in order to keep up, and despite the drastic changes brought by the pandemic, some graduation practices simply cannot be removed even by a world health crisis.

Graduation leis in multiple colors (red, blue, violet, yellow)
Filipino graduation leis in various design and color

    Graduation rites in the country will not be complete without the use of a garland, a small corsage or a neck sash of some sort that is attached or hanged to the graduates. The delicately arranged flowers accompanied by a ribbon- carefully pinned on graduation speakers, awardees and participants in Philippine Graduation rites is almost synonymous to culture and identity.

    Although these Filipino leis are so common in graduation ceremonies since type immemorial thus it, being overlooked most of the time, they still hold much value and meaning for Filipinos.

    Lei necklaces are not just worn by the graduates but are also worn by the guest speaker of the graduation or even by some visitors. They are use to signify a lot of things and do not exist solely as an ornament for the occasion.

A close-up picture of a yellow graduation lei
A yellow graduation lei to be used in a Filipino graduation

    These event necklaces serve various purposes, from identifying if a graduate has a distinction or award or not down to distinguishing who paid the photographer. Welcome leis may also be given as a form of token for special guests. These ribbon leis are so popular before and even during the pandemic that it may seem like a graduation may not be complete without it. In fact, the use of neck-sashes and event garlands were observed even in virtual completion rites ceremonies in the country.

    Truly, Filipino leis are undoubtedly a part of Filipino Graduation culture and would be here to stay for the next years and for the next generations of graduates that are yet to come.