UW News

June 8, 2017

Distinguished educator and humanitarian Dr. Johnnetta Cole to speak at UW’s 142nd Commencement Saturday

New graduates celebrate during the 141st commencement ceremony in 2016

New graduates celebrate during the 141st Commencement ceremony in 2016

About 5,700 graduates, along with 50,000-plus family members, friends, faculty and other observers, are expected to attend the 142nd University of Washington commencement ceremonies June 10 at Husky Stadium.

UW President Ana Mari Cauce will preside as more than 13,000 degrees are conferred, including more than 7,700 bachelor’s degrees, more than 3,900 master’s degrees, more than 500 professional degrees, 11 educational specialist degrees and more than 780 doctoral degrees.

Dr. Johnnetta Cole

Dr. Johnnetta ColeFranko Khoury/National Museum of African Art Smithsonian Institution

Dr. Johnnetta Betsch Cole, former president of Spelman College and Bennett College, and recently retired director of the National Museum of African Art, will be the featured speaker.

Cole became well known on the national stage in 1987, when she became the first African American woman to serve as president at Spelman, a historically black women’s college. Under her leadership, Spelman was named the top liberal arts college in the South.

Her national profile continued to rise in 2009, when she was named director of the National Museum of African Art. Cole also serves on the Scholarly Advisory Committee of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Africa American History and Culture, which President Barack Obama formally opened in September 2016.

June 11th, 2016 graduation, 141 Commencement

June 11th, 2016 graduation, 141st CommencementUniversity of Washington

The ceremony will be streamed live on UWTV starting at 12:30 p.m.

Degrees are awarded to those who have completed academic requirements during the 2016-2017 academic year.

Members of the Board of Regents, deans and other representatives of the university’s 16 colleges and schools will participate in the ceremony. Many colleges and schools also have separate graduation programs and investiture ceremonies.

UW Tacoma will celebrate its 27th commencement with two ceremonies, 10 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, June 14, at the Tacoma Dome. William W. Philip, a community leader and businessman who had a seminal role in establishing UW Tacoma, will receive an honorary degree during the 10 a.m. ceremony. More than 1,700 students will receive degrees.

UW Bothell will celebrate its 26th commencement at 4 p.m. Tuesday, June 13, at Safeco Field. Leland Melvin, who was drafted in the National Football League and went on to become an astronaut, will be the keynote speaker. More than 1,800 students will receive degrees.