Each year, one undergraduate student and one graduate student are selected to serve as student commencement speakers at the May commencement ceremony.
Eligible students are invited to apply via email in early December. This invitation is automatically sent to all graduate students as well as undergraduates with a 3.7 cumulative GPA or higher. Undergraduates with a cumulative GPA lower than 3.7 may apply via a nomination from an SOC faculty, staff, or student. Student commencement speakers must be eligible to participate in the May commencement ceremony.
The student speaker application is due at the end of January each year. The application asks for a list of activities, awards, and post-graduation plans. It also asks for a commencement speech draft of no more than three minutes.
Finalists are invited to perform their speech for the selection committee, including Dean Rutenbeck, with final selections made by the end of March.
American University’s 128th commencement ceremonies will feature the conferral of undergraduate and graduate degrees, recognition of the University and Student Achievement Award winners, commencement addresses, and remarks by President Neil Kerwin. All ceremonies will be held in Bender Arena, located on AU’s main campus. Full 2014 commencement information.