We recognize that Commencement is a deeply meaningful experience for our graduates and their families. We are committed to providing a celebration that recognizes this milestone, despite the many limitations and restrictions related to the global pandemic. 

Class of 2021—Graduate Recognition Ceremonies
Saturday, May 15

Graduate Recognition Ceremonies will be held at 10 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 3 p.m. Students will pre-register for the ceremony of their choice. The ceremonies will include very short remarks followed by the revered tradition of students hearing their name announced and walking down the steps of Old West. The ceremonies will be held rain or shine, but, in the event of severe weather (thunder, lightning, high winds, hail or other conditions that make it unsafe to hold the ceremonies outside), the ceremonies will be held on Sunday, May 16.

For additional information, please refer to the About the Ceremonies section.

Class of 2021—Virtual Commencement Ceremony
Sunday, May 23

The Commencement exercises at Dickinson represent the culmination of one’s undergraduate experience and the successful completion of the requirements for graduation. The faculty and Board of Trustees of the college approve the conferral of degrees prior to the ceremony. The virtual ceremony will include brief remarks from President Margee M. Ensign, a pre-recorded address by the 2021 Commencement speaker Eric Holder, recognition of fellow honorary degree recipients Esther T. Benjamin and David McCormick, the presentation of the Sam Rose ’58 and Julie Walters Prize for Global Environmental Activism to the 2021 recipient Varshini Prakash, the announcement of the Young Alumni Trustee by Board of Trustees Chair John E. Jones III ’77 P’11, conferring of the degrees and elements of the Graduate Recognition Ceremonies.

The Virtual Commencement Ceremony will be held at 2 p.m. EDT on Sunday, May 23. It will be broadcast on Facebook Premiere and you will be able to access it on the Dickinson Facebook page.

Virtual Commencement Ceremony Program Order Form

Virtual Commencement Ceremony Program Order Form

Programs for the ceremony will be available online to view or print at home. You may also order copies of the program to be printed and mailed to you. Orders will be taken until Friday, June 11, and mailed later in June. The order form is available here.

Family Celebrations

Family Celebrations

As you plan your at-home celebrations, we have pulled together fun and festive party printables from personalized yard signs and banners to candy wrappers and graduate advice cards.

The college bookstore offers a variety of options for your graduate, including announcementsyard signsdiploma frames, class rings or special gifts like a Dickinson chair. Items can be purchased online, by calling 1-800-582-5436, or by visiting the store during the Graduate Recognition Ceremonies.

Class of 2020—Modified Commencement Ceremony
September 17-19, 2021

Last spring, as the class of 2020 was set to graduate in the midst of the COVID-19 global pandemic, Dickinson was forced to make the difficult decision to cancel the 2020 Commencement ceremony. President Margee M. Ensign, however, assured graduating seniors they would be honored and given their much-anticipated opportunity to experience the revered traditions of a Dickinson College Commencement. Earlier this year, President Ensign announced plans for a modified ceremony and celebration to be held during Homecoming & Family Weekend, Sept. 17-19, 2021. While the details of that event must remain fluid due to rapidly changing health and safety guidelines for large gatherings, the college is pleased to announce the Commencement speaker and honorary degree recipients for the class of 2020.