University of Chicago’s Convocation ceremonies to begin June 9

Five days of virtual and in-person events will honor Class of 2021

The University of Chicago community and its graduating students will celebrate Convocation beginning June 9, with five days of virtual and in-person events honoring the Class of 2021.

The University-wide ceremony, the traditional “calling together” of the UChicago community, will be held virtually and will be webcast on the Convocation website beginning at 4 p.m. CT on June 9. President Robert J. Zimmer will confer degrees to candidates and provide remarks, along with Provost Ka Yee C. Lee. This year’s faculty speaker is Prof. Deborah Nelson, who specializes in the study of late 20th-century U.S. culture and politics.

The Class Day ceremony, which honors graduates of the College, will be held virtually and will be webcast on the Convocation website beginning at 2 p.m. CT on June 11. This year’s invited speaker is Rep. Andy Kim, AB’04, who represents the Third Congressional District of New Jersey. Fourth-year students Rodrigo Estrada, Emily Robb and Justine Shih also will address the Class of 2021.

The divisions and schools will hold their diploma and hooding ceremonies from June 9-12, with the College diploma ceremonies scheduled for June 12-13. Check the Convocation website for a detailed schedule of in-person and virtual ceremonies, including webcast links to virtual events, as well as information about guest policies for in-person ceremonies.

The virtual ceremonies were filmed on campus in May, while observing health and safety guidelines. Due to the changing nature of the pandemic, the University is actively consulting with city of Chicago officials to ensure that all plans for on-campus ceremonies are in compliance with required health and safety protocols.

Members of the University community, along with their family and friends, are invited to share photos, memories and congratulatory messages on the Convocation website or on UChicago social media channels using #uchicago2021.

University honors

During the main Convocation ceremony, the University will award honorary degrees to six distinguished scholars: Paul Brumer, professor of chemical physics at the University of Toronto; Dominique Charpin, a scholar of Mesopotamian civilization at the Collège de France; Jeff Cheeger, a mathematician at New York University; Jennifer A. Doudna, a Nobel Prize-winning molecular and cell biologist and chemist at the University of California, Berkeley; Charles L. Kane, a physicist at the University of Pennsylvania; and Françoise Lavocat, a literary scholar at Université de la Sorbonne Nouvelle.

The University also will recognize faculty members for excellence in teaching with presentations of the Llewellyn John and Harriet Manchester Quantrell Awards for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching and the Faculty Awards for Excellence in Graduate Teaching and Mentoring.