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Commencement 2017

Swarthmore held its 145th Commencement ceremony in the Scott Amphitheater.

Department Overview


At Swarthmore's 145th commencement on May 21, President Valerie Smith awarded honorary degrees to film producer and journalist David Gelber ’63, philanthropist John Goldman '71, and actress and playwright Anna Deavere Smith. In addition, 374 undergraduates were awarded degrees at the ceremony, held at the Scott Amphitheater.

Of the 374 graduates, 352 received the Bachelor of Arts degree and 35 the Bachelor of Science in engineering degree. Thirteen had double degrees. Highest honors were awarded to 11 graduates, 49 received high honors, and 28 received honors. The senior class speaker, as voted by her classmates, was Iris Chan '17 from Lake Forest, Ill., who graduated as a biology major and a psychology and English literature minor.

Special awards announced at the ceremony include the Ivy, Oak, Lang, and McCabe Engineering Awards.

Associate Dean of Academic Affairs and Associate Professor of Educational Studies Diane Anderson and Simon Bloch '17 addressed the senior class at Last Collection on May 19. Speakers at this address, an assembly-style gathering, are chosen by the senior class. Scheuer Family Professor of Humanities Michael Cothren addressed the graduating class at Baccalaureate services on May 28. The Baccalaureate is the spiritual component of Commencement weekend, featuring the inspirational remarks of a friend of the College.