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Class of 2022 Students Invited to Apply to Speak at Commencement

Application deadline, including short speech outline, is March 1

students sit during the commencement ceremony

Students who are graduating in May 2022 have an opportunity to share their thoughts with their classmates as the student speaker at the 2022 commencement ceremony.  This year, one change in the process should make applying easier than ever.

The process has changed this year so applicants are only being asked for a speech outline in the first round. Changes in the selection committee will also put more of an emphasis on the student perspective.

All undergraduates and graduate/professional students who are eligible to graduate or walk on May 8, 2022 are invited to submit an application to serve as the commencement speaker. 

A brief speech outline of around 250 words must be submitted by midnight on March 1.  The selection committee will choose several finalists from the submissions. Finalists will be asked to deliver draft speeches to the selection committee at a later date. 

In past years, the students have brought a sharp perspective on the common experiences that the students faced during their time at Duke. In 2021, Meghana Sai Iragavarapu spoke to the Class of 2021 about what the pandemic did to her concepts of space between people.  In the delayed ceremony for the Class of 2020, Sabrina Maciariello spoke about finding love in time of grief.

If you are interested in applying to be the Class of 2022 speaker, you may submit an application here.