Student Speaker Selection Process

All interested students are encouraged to apply to be our Student Speaker at the 2023 Commencement Ceremony!

To be eligible, students interested in delivering the commencement address must meet the below criteria:

  • Have completed, or be on track to complete, all requirements for graduation.
  • Be in good academic and disciplinary standing.
  • Commit to attend and participate fully in the student speaker rehearsal (May 3rd) and the commencement ceremony (May 21st). 

Student Speaker Selection Committee

  • Alicia Artis
  • Olivia Binda
  • Hannah Davis
  • Jillian Gately
  • Shamira Nawz
  • Nicholas Ogam
  • Zoe Peppas
  • Paige Roseman
  • Yomaris Sanchez
  • Emily Thompson
  • Miriam Trojanovic
  • Lisa Mueller (Staff)

Application Requirements and Expectations:

  • Your speech should be 3-5 minutes in length. Submitted by one person. No groups included.
  • Prepare a draft of your speech. Your draft doesn’t need to be in final form. It should, however, sufficiently convey the tone and content of your speech.
  • The student speaker will be chosen based on speech content and presentation skills. Content should be celebratory, respectful, and inspirational and should not include inflammatory, and/or derogatory comments.
  • Prepare a 2-minute video of your speech demonstrating your presentation style.
  • Submit your application (written application, written speech, and video) via the Box link provided. Please know that the link will allow students to only submit their complete application to Box. Students will not be able to see their competitors’ submissions.
  • Please know that the University reserves the right to edit the selected student speaker content.

The speaker will be evaluated based on:

  • Speech content (clarity, introduction, body, conclusion)
  • Presentation skills (tone, body language, eye contact, use of language)
  • Relatability of the content to your peers, faculty, family, friends and staff who may have supported you during your journey

The selection committee will rate each student using a rubric. Candidates who are invited as a finalist to audition should attend with a final version of their speech and be ready to give the speech as if presenting at the actual commencement ceremony.

If you are selected to be the student speaker, you will be seated on stage during the ceremony, have your name printed in the program, and be eligible to receive special, reserved seating for your guests.

Important Dates:

  • Monday, March 13, 11:59 p.m. - Application Deadline
  • Wednesday, April 5, 12:00 p.m. - Live Auditions
  • Thursday, April 6, 12:00 p.m. - Backup Auditions
  • Thursday, April 13 - Student Speaker Announcement
  • Wednesday, May 3 - Student Speaker Rehearsal


The application period has closed.

Email any questions or concerns to: