Spring 2023 Commencement cheers on new Bobcat graduates
Bobcats had aplenty to celebrate this past week, with about 3,600 students joining Ohio University’s alumni family during Spring 2023 Commencement.
Festivities in Athens kicked off with the Graduate Commencement Ceremony on Friday, May 5. Approximately 1,000 doctoral and master’s degree students participated.
Dr. Saumya Pant, assistant professor in the School of Media Arts and Studies and the director of the Communication and Development Studies program in the Center for International Studies, served as the keynote speaker for the ceremony. An OHIO graduate, Pant received the 2022 Outstanding Graduate Faculty Award at last year’s commencement celebrations.
“Now that you will be a graduate from Ohio University, a great privilege, make a decision to use your privilege and your voice for the things that really matter and for the stories that have an impact,” Pant said. “For those of you that feel invisible, please know that your story matters. Your ideas matter. Your experiences matter. Your vision for what our world can, and should be, matters.”
Dr. Atsuo Iiyoshi, Chairman of the Board of Trustees and Chancellor Emeritus of Chubu University in Japan, was also awarded an honorary degree for his strengthening of the Chubu-OHIO partnership for over two decades. While Chairman Iiyosh was unable to attend, Chubu University Chancellor Dr. Yasuhiro Iye accepted the award on his behalf and announced that Chubu is gifting 50 more cherry blossom trees to OHIO.
Undergraduate Commencement Ceremonies took place on Saturday, May 6. Approximately 2,600 students participated throughout the day. David Collins, B.S.C. ’89, and Mike DeNoma, B.A. ’77, were the keynote speakers for the morning and afternoon events, respectively.
Collins is an eight-time Emmy award winning producer and creator of the pop culture phenomenon “Queer Eye,” as well as co-creator and executive producer of “Legendary.” His work continues to give voices to marginalized members of the LGBTQ+ community.
“Listen to yourself,” Collins encouraged the graduates. “Trust the dance partners of your inner confidence [and] your inner anxiety. They both have something priceless to teach you. They’re always with you, they’re never going to go away. They’re fine-tuning you, shaping you, asking you to pay attention to who you truly are. Don’t run from them.”
DeNoma is one of the world’s leading emerging market bankers, as well as an adventurer, supporter of children’s causes, father, and experienced CEO, chairman and board director for international and public companies.
“Class of 2023, know and sharpen your strengths and build a sparkling career you love. Be unsatisfied and curious. When negative thoughts burst in the front door, start opening up the back and kick them on through,” DeNoma urged the graduates. “When the winds of adversity blow, turn to face them. Grow your roots deep and your heart more caring, protecting yourself and everyone around you.”
OHIO’s regional campuses also held special events to celebrate and honor the Class of 2023 graduates on Thursday, May 4.
Recordings of the Ohio University Commencement Ceremonies are available on the Commencement webpage.
Click on the photos to view captions.
A graduate student radiates joy on their commencement day.
An OHIO graduate wears a knitted cap at graduation.
A group of Bobcats pose outside of the Convocation Center, relishing this moment together.
OHIO graduates take a selfie outside of the Convocation Center, capturing the big day they've worked toward together.
Students prepare for Commencement by receiving their name cards.
Graduating Bobcats spot faces of loved ones in the crowd cheering them on.
Keynote Speaker David Collins, B.S.C. '89, shares his words of wisdom with the graduates at the morning Commencement Ceremony on Saturday, May 6.
Dr. Saumya Pant, assistant professor in the School of Media Arts and Studies and director of the Communication and Development Studies program in the Center for International Studies, delivers the commencement address to graduate students on Friday, May 5.
Graduating senior and Claire O. and Charles J. Ping Cutler Scholar Sarah Ladipo addresses her fellow classmates during the Commencement ceremony.
President Hugh Sherman provides advice to graduating Bobcats, reminding them they will forever have a home at OHIO.
OHIO students share their enthusiasm during Commencement.
A Ph.D. student is hooded at the Friday, May 5, Commencement ceremony.
A hood is placed on the doctoral candidate signifying their accomplishment of receiving a Ph.D.
OHIO's graduating students shared Bobcat pride with lots of cheering and enthusiasm at each of the Commencement ceremonies.
A proud graduate acknowledges the crowd.
Trustee Matt Evans congratulates a new OHIO graduate.
Commencement Speaker David Collins asked the graduates to join hands with those sitting beside them at one point during his remarks and asked them to embrace their differences and their shared human experiences.
Pausing for a photo outside of the Convocation Center during a beautiful day for Commencement at Ohio University.
Graduates today, Bobcats forever.
Proud family members and friends packed the Convocation Center to cheer on their favorite Bobcats at Commencement.
A student celebrates the momentous occasion with a cigar.
The day was filled with hugs, handshakes and lifelong memories for thousands of proud Ohio University graduates.
The weather was perfect to celebrate the Ohio University Class of 2023.
Peace out Class of 2023.
OHIO graduates celebrated their big day while also inspiring younger generations to reach for their dreams, too.