Commencement

The graduate school holds one commencement ceremony annually. The 2016 ceremony will be held on June 5, 2016. Degree candidates from the previous December, May degree candidates, and July/August degree candidates who have filed a degree application by the March 1 deadline are eligible to participate.

Commencement Speaker Selection: In order to select the student commencement speaker, the graduate school will solicit nominations from the graduating class. Students may self-nominate or they may be nominated by their peers. Once nominated, the student is asked to provide a two-to-three page writing sample (not research), and to prepare a one-page outline of the speech with rationale. Nominees will be asked to present a two-to-three minute excerpt of their draft of the speech before a panel composed of representatives from the dean's office, the faculty, the staff, and the Student Union Network. Following presentations, the panel will select a speaker based on the following three criteria:

  • The student is recognized as outstanding, both in the classroom and in the larger community.
  • The student is an exemplary representative of the graduate student body.
  • The student demonstrates excellent speaking ability with a well-thought-out speech.