The UM-Dearborn degree: ‘A blueprint to construct a well-rounded worldview’

April 28, 2022

Speakers shared how UM-Dearborn’s diversity in culture, language and experiences are gained along with their diploma. “Yes, the world contains Dearborn. But Dearborn also contains the world,” said Spring 2022 Commencement Keynote Speaker Mayor Abdullah Hammoud, ‘10.

Photo at the 2 p.m. April 30, 2022 Commencement ceremony.
Hiba Mzannar walks across the stage during the 2 p.m. April 30 Commencement ceremony. Photos by Jen Prouty

Thousands of people — from UM-Dearborn’s campus to around the world in nearly all seven continents — watched as members of the Class of Spring 2022 heard their names, walked up the outdoor stage and waved to the biggest fans.

Three outdoor ceremonies — 11 a.m., 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. — took place on campus April 30.

During the ideal spring day, 60 degrees and partly sunny, 1000 Dearborn Wolverines and their friends and families celebrated the 1,031 degrees at a maize-and-blue adorned stage outside of the Fieldhouse. People from more than 500 locations tuned in via UM-Dearborn’s livestream on YouTube and Facebook. See photos of the big day here.

Photo at the 2 p.m. April 30, 2022 Commencement ceremony.

Chancellor Domenico Grasso told the newest Wolverine alumni that their Michigan degree is part of who they are — and he hopes they use it to impact the world around them.

“You will have the chance to make a positive change in the world, and when that opportunity arrives, I hope you seize it. Remember to whom much is given, much is expected,” he said.  “The Class of 2022 is going to contribute great things to our society. I am confident that you will take the knowledge and skills you learned here at UM-Dearborn and build a better tomorrow.”

Photo at the 2 p.m. April 30, 2022 Commencement ceremony.
Chancellor Grasso celebrates the Spring 2022 Wolverine graduates.

Commencement’s Keynote Speaker and City of Dearborn Mayor Abdullah Hammoud — a proud UM-Dearborn graduate — said the U-M experience is a world-class one, even when a regional campus, at times, feels local. But it’s much more than that. Hammoud said studying at Dearborn also gives people the blueprint to construct a well-rounded worldview.

“There is a good chance that the person seated next to you was the first in their family to attend college. You no doubt met someone who spoke another language, who had lived in another part of the world,” he said. “You got to see so many journeys and detours toward the American dream. And learn better than most what a vibrant, messy multicultural democracy looks like. The Dearborn Difference is exactly that. It’s knowing that the hyphen on your degree is an invitation to understand the world through a local lens.”

Photo at the 2 p.m. April 30, 2022 Commencement ceremony.
Mayor Hammoud delivers the keynote address.

In addition to gaining a new perspective of the world, Commencement Student Speaker Halle Mancuso said the UM-Dearborn experience helps students find ways to grow internally. Mancuso, who graduated with a bioengineering degree, wanted her fellow grads to remember a few things as they are starting new careers, updating resumes, beginning graduate school and more.

She said self-worth doesn’t come from a GPA or a job performance, it’s important to work in an area you are passionate about, accountability for your actions is essential, and look for opportunities to serve as a mentor to others. “Years from now, be absolutely sure that you can say that you chose your life and that you didn’t settle for it. Congratulations, Class of 2022. Good luck and Go Blue!”

Mancuso was joined by so many people — in the seats, across the state, and throughout the world — sending words of encouragement

Photo at the 2 p.m. April 30, 2022 Commencement ceremony.

Alumnus Elliott Ring, now a CPA who owns his own firm in Michigan, showed solidarity with his Wolverines by live chatting on YouTube that he graduated 44 years before. Mushfiqurrahman Maruf commented on the Facebook Live feed, “Congratulations....to all the best” from Malaysia. And Jennifer Hughey wanted her grads to know, “Your mom is watching in Africa.” See more well wishes for the UM-Dearborn Class of 2022.

And it’s this connection with people around the world that makes the community, and the campus, a great place to live and learn, keynote speaker Hammoud said.

“Yes, the world contains Dearborn. But Dearborn also contains the world,” he said. “Class of 2022, this place has given you the tools to change the world for the better, no matter where you choose to take them. Congratulations and … Go Blue!”

Photo at the 2 p.m. April 30, 2022 Commencement ceremony.

Article by Sarah Tuxbury.