Student Commencement Speaker Information

Winter 2015 Commencement - Sunday, April 26, 2015


Each semester the University of Michigan – Dearborn offers a truly unique and special honor to two outstanding graduating undergraduate and graduate students: the opportunity to address the University community during the Commencement Ceremonies.  These two students are provided the distinct opportunity to speak to their student colleagues, University faculty and staff members, honored guests and families as they depart the University.

The speakers, who are selected through a competition held each semester, must be an eligible member of the graduating class they plan to address.  Because there are two Commencement Ceremonies, one student speaker will be selected for each Ceremony.

Application Materials

Those who wish to be considered for this honor must:

1.         Complete the “Student Commencement Speaker” application form
            (Applications are also available in the OSE.)

2.         Submit a detailed draft of your original three- to five- minute proposed speech

3.         Submit a copy of a speech you have given previously

4.         Submit a copy of your resume

5.         Submit a letter of support from a faculty or staff member.

Selection Process

Faculty, staff and student members comprise the selection committee.  The committee reviews the applications, meets with selected participants in the competition (if necessary), and selects the speaker by mid-March.

One student speaker will be selected for each Commencement Ceremony.  Students must be enrolled in the appropriate College/School in order to speak at that Ceremony and must be eligible to graduate that semester and in good academic and judicial standing with the University.  One COB or CECS or CEHHS student will be selected for the morning ceremony.  One CASL student will be selected for the afternoon ceremony. Undergraduate and graduate students may apply. 

Selection is based on quality and content of proposed speech, oral presentation (if applicable), quality of application materials, and demonstrated student experience.  The best speeches will be those that are directed at a large number of people; highly personal speeches may not be appropriate.

After selection, the student will receive guidance on preparing and delivering their speeches prior to the Commencement Ceremony.

Important Dates

Commencement Speaker Application Deadline: 5 pm on Friday, February 20,  2015.

Winter 2015 Commencement: Sunday, April 26, 2015.

Students should submit their materials in a sealed envelope to the Vice Chancellor for Enrollment Management and Student Life Office, 1060 Administration Building.

For more information on the process, students may call Jonathan Larson in the Office for Student Engagement at (313) 593-5390.