Ten favorite moments from Commencement week

In the sunshine and in the rain, family and friends from around the country gathered this May to celebrate the achievements of our 2018 graduates. Congratulations to our newest alumni on earning their bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees!


At the Arts & Sciences recognition ceremony, all ArtSci graduates are recognized by name and major. Here, Jen Smith, dean of the College of Arts & Sciences, congratulates a student. 

Photo by Sean Garcia/Washington University 



During his speech at the Arts & Sciences recognition ceremony, senior Reuben Hogan reflected on the nature of pressure: 

"Now there is one thing I hope you keep in mind. It’s a formula. PV=nRT. (I’m a nerd I know.) … My point is that we at WashU know pressure. … What of the other variables? N = the number of possibilities and commitments we put on our plate. R is the reality coefficient, or “realness" - that is to say, the more real things get, the more pressure that is placed on us. T = time, arguably the most valuable resource of college. Finally, V = the value and joy that we derive internally from the work that we do. What is of note here, is that value is the only variable which is as it increases, the overall amount of pressure decreases." 


Photo by Danny Reise/Washington University 



The Class of 2018 got creative with their mortar boards! 

Photo by Sean Garcia/Washington University



The day before the Arts & Sciences recognition ceremony, University College celebrated those who completed a degree or certificate program within the past year. These continuing education graduates were all smiles. 

Photo by Stacy Stockwell/Washington University



Graduates who earned their master's and doctoral degrees were honored at the Graduate School hooding and recognition ceremony, a symbolic recognition of leaving student status and joining a community of scholars. William Tate, dean of the Graduate School, gave remarks. 

Photo by Danny Reise/Washington University



At the All-University Commencement on May 17, heavy rain threatened to dampen the spirits...

Photo by Whitney Curtis/Washington University



... but the graduates, including anthropology major and French minor Maela Singh (center), didn't seem to mind. 


Photo by Whitney Curtis/Washington University



Commencement speaker Anne-Marie Slaughter encouraged the new graduates to start with their own communities as they set out to change the world: 

“Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is American renewal. Not just as a graduating class, but as a generation ... If renewal is the mission, why is it your mission? Because American renewal is happening from the bottom up and heartland out."

Photo by Whitney Curtis/Washington University



Bill Feng, senior class president, reminded his classmates to cherish the friendships forged during their time at WashU:

"Think about the relationships that will continue forward beyond this campus after graduation. Do you remember when you met them? Why or when you met? I can tell you now that it doesn’t matter. Because we met our friends by random chance, exactly like my grandfather met his friends … It was that time you sat alone in the dining hall and started a conversation with that one person who probably only wanted to eat in peace. These are our friends, these are our colleagues, and this is our family for the rest of our life. Like my grandfather’s friends, they will be there after milestones."

Photo by Whitney Curtis/Washington University



Finally, with wilted hats and happy hearts, the graduates were officially conferred their degrees! We wish them all the best in their future endeavors. 


Photo by Whitney Curtis/Washington University


For more photos from Commencement week, see the full album on Facebook