For the first time in three years, CU Boulder will honor its new graduates in person at the Spring Commencement Ceremony at Folsom Field on Thursday, May 5, where more than 9,000 degrees will be awarded. The event will feature CU Boulder alumnus and award-winning journalist and Washington correspondent for NBC News Tom Costello as speaker.
The ceremony will honor spring and summer fall 2021 and 2022 degree candidates, including approximately 6,873 bachelor’s degrees, 1,514 master’s degrees, 189 law degrees, 160 MBAs, and 392 doctoral degrees.
The ceremony will include:
- Remarks by Chancellor Philip DiStefano.
- A congratulatory message from UC President Todd Saliman.
- Opening remarks from NBC News correspondent Tom Costello.
- The address of the senior class council.
- The traditional senior class celebration video.
- A presentation of the Chancellor’s and Outstanding Alumni Recognition Awards.
- The graduation.
- Welcome to the Forever Buffs family.
- A reading of the Norlin charge by the University of Colorado Board of Trustees.
- A representation of the Alma Mater.
Stadium gates open at 7 a.m. Guests must be in their seats by 8:15 a.m. to watch the student procession. Participants should allow sufficient time for traffic, parking and security checks. City and campus roads may be congested for approximately 90 minutes before the ceremony and approximately one hour after.
The ceremony takes place outside whatever the weather, and participants are encouraged to dress appropriately for Colorado’s ever-changing conditions. In the event of heavy rain or snow, an abbreviated ceremony will be held. Follow local media and alerts.colorado.edu for any weather-related delays.
Early arrival is recommended. Guests attending departmental recognition ceremonies immediately following the main ceremony are encouraged to park in areas close to their department’s ceremony. (Please review the department recognition ceremonies webpage for specific locations.)
View the campus map for a visual of the affected areas at the start.
CU Boulder alumnus Tom Costelloan award-winning reporter and Washington correspondent for NBC News will deliver the keynote address.
Costello, who grew up in Centennial, Colorado, and graduated from CU Boulder with a bachelor’s degree in broadcast journalism in 1987, spent six years at 9News in Denver. As an Emmy-winning NBC News correspondent based in Washington, DC, he now reports daily on all NBC News and MSNBC platforms, including TODAY, NBC Nightly News, MSNBC and NBC News Now.
As a journalist, Costello has covered a range of topics, from the billionaire space race and European financial markets to the death of Princess Diana; the two fatal Boeing 737-MAX crashes and subsequent investigations; the downing of a Ukrainian airliner over Tehran; and the search for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370. He was instrumental in covering the 2009 “Miracle on the Hudson” passenger plane landing, for which NBC News received a national Emmy Award.
Meet the Early Marshal
A professor at CU Boulder’s Department of Theater and Dance, Bud Coleman is no stranger to having a starring role. Trained as an actor and dancer, he has performed in front of a large audience. But, he says, there is something magical about leading a ceremony that brings such joy to all involved. Learn about what it’s like to lead the ceremony and gain insight into some of the beginning traditions, including the mace and academic hoods.
College, departmental ceremonies
Many departments within CU Boulder’s schools and colleges will host events May 5-8 to personally recognize their graduates. Students should check with their respective departments for more information.
Hat and Dress Information
All students are required to wear badges to participate in the Spring 2022 Launch Ceremony.
Honorary degrees, Distinguished Service Award, University Medal
Juan Espinosa will receive the honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters in recognition of his half-century chronicling the Colorado Chicano movement through words and images.
Linda Hogan will receive the Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters in recognition of her literary achievements and her compassion for the natural world.
Ryan Haygood will receive the Distinguished Service Award for his dedication to social justice and his leadership in preserving democracy.
Michael Leeds, will receive the University Medal for his commitment to the success and strength of the University of Colorado.
The fans of always
More than 250,000 CU Boulder alumni are part of the Forever Buffs community with access to all programs, events, benefits and services offered by the Alumni Association with no lifetime dues.
- Supreme Court Justice Byron White.
- Matt Stone; co-creator and executive producer, South Park.
- Cynthia Lawrence, opera singer.
- Roy Romer, Governor of Colorado.
- Kate Brown, Governor of Oregon.
- Mary Decker Slaney, world class runner.
- Tom Costello, award-winning journalist and Washington correspondent for NBC News.
- Rick Reilly, sports journalist.
- Savannah Sellers, correspondent for NBC News and MSNBC.
- Billy Kidd, Olympic skier.
- Roberta Ramo, first female president of the American Bar Association.
- Jim Gray, sports commentator for ESPN, CBS and NBC.
- Hank Brown, US Senator.
- David Grusin, composer.
- Jane Jackson; CEO, Banana Republic, Walmart.com.
- More notable alumni.