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Commencement 2023 By the Numbers

Rows of white chairs on Parrish Lawn

Commencement has arrived at Swarthmore. The weekend events will mark the culmination of four years of exploration and growth for seniors, spirited instruction from and collaboration with faculty, and multifaceted support from staff from across the campus.

Before final touches are made and regalia is adorned, let’s examine Swarthmore’s Commencement — its 151st — by the numbers.

  • 396: Graduating seniors
  • 396: Roses and Itea sweetspire shrubs that will be given to seniors by the Scott Arboretum
  • 412: Degrees conferred, with 379 bachelors of arts and 33 bachelors of science 
  • 3,692: Folding chairs set out at the celebration
  • 3,800: Commencement programs printed for the event
  • 1: Last Collection taking place in the Scott Outdoor Amphitheater prior to Commencement
  • 4: Seniors who competed to speak at Commencement, including first-place finisher Callie Cho
  • 1,000+: Labor hours required to set up and tear down the stage, lighting, and video setups on Parrish Lawn
  • 2: Retiring faculty members attending their last graduation “send-off”
  • 4: Honorary degree recipients
  • 96: Graduating seniors who participated in varsity athletics
  • 37: Members of the Class of 2023 who competed in club sports this year
  • 1: Participant in the National Collegiate Rugby All-Star Game, Kina Nichols, who competed along with Adriana Cavazos '26.
  • 16: Writing Associates (WAs), who cumulatively served as WAs for 40 different courses
  • 20: Resident Assistants
  • 8: Student Academic Mentors 
  • 2: Green Advisors
Students wearing caps and gowns take group picture
  • 89: Students who are first in their family to attend college
  • 55: Students receiving Honors
  • 163: Written exams administered across 86 different courses in 26 disciplines
  • 228: Oral Honors exams taken, including 104 in social sciences, 76 in humanities, 41 in natural sciences, and seven in interdisciplinary courses
  • 124: External Honors examiners, including three from Canada and one each from Argentina and Great Britain.
  • 1: Cohort — the fifth — of Swarthmore Summer Scholars to graduate
  • 78: Students with the most popular major, economics
  • 82: Students with special majors
  • 7: First-time special majors, including Jewish studies, geophysics, and environmental governance & policy
  • 172: Students with double majors
  • 191: Students with a minor
  • 70: International and permanent-resident students from 34 countries
  • 33: Students with dual citizenship (U.S. plus another country)
  • 42: States represented by students, in addition to Washington, D.C.
  • 30: Students with at least one parent who is an alum
  • 7: Students with at least one grandparent or great-grandparent who is an alum
  • 12+: National award winners, including five Fulbright grantees, a Gaither Junior Fellow, a Keasbey Scholar, a Watson Fellow, a Stanford Innovation Fellow, and an honoree at the Society for Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics & Native Americans in Science (SACNAS) National Diversity in STEM Conference
  • 2: Students who are on track to earn Pennsylvania teaching certifications
  • 5: Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellows
  • 5: Lang Opportunity Scholars
  • 3: Languages in which the livestream of Commencement will be available (English with Spanish and Mandarin subtitles)

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