UW News

April 12, 2023

U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona to address UW’s Class of 2023

UW News

commencement celebrations

U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona deliver the 2023 Commencement address on June 10.April Hong/University of Washington

UPDATE on June 10: Due to unforeseen circumstances, Secretary Cardona will not be speaking at today’s commencement ceremony.

ORIGINAL POST: U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona will deliver the 2023 Commencement address for the 148th ceremony, which takes place June 10 at Alaska Airlines Field at Husky Stadium.

Cardona, who began his career as an elementary school teacher, was tapped by President Joe Biden to serve the nation and help schools reopen following the COVID lockdown. He aims to raise the bar for equity and excellence in education for all learners, and notes a commitment to working in partnership with parents, families, students and educators to recover from the pandemic and reimagine a higher-performing and more equitable education system that works better for all.

“We are thrilled to welcome Secretary Cardona to the UW and delighted that he will address this year’s graduating class. His leadership in addressing the burden of student loans and his commitment to increasing access to higher education so that more students can succeed in pursuing their dreams is creating impact at the UW and throughout Washington and the nation,” UW President Ana Mari Cauce said. “I know our graduates and their families will be inspired by his participation in their special day.”

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U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel CardonaDepartment of Education

Under Cardona’s leadership, the Education Department has focused on helping all K-12 students accelerate learning and achieve academic excellence; delivering a comprehensive and rigorous education for every student; eliminating the teacher shortage for every school; investing in every student’s mental health and well-being; providing every student with a pathway to multilingualism; and ensuring every student has avenues to college and a career.

“The University of Washington is an exciting place that continues to raise the bar for academic excellence, innovation and inclusion, and I’m truly honored to join the UW community in celebrating the Class of 2023,” Cardona said. “These students will graduate having persevered through all the challenges presented by a global pandemic, and their resilience and determination will drive their success wherever they go.”

2023 Commencement Information

UW’s 148th Commencement ceremony is scheduled for Saturday, June 10 at Alaska Airlines Field at Husky Stadium. UW Bothell’s graduation is scheduled for Sunday, June 11 at T-Mobile Park. The Commencement ceremony for UW Tacoma is scheduled for Friday, June 9 at the Tacoma Dome.


Before moving to Washington, D.C., Cardona served as Connecticut’s commissioner of education, a position he held since 2019. Connecticut was the first state in the nation to provide equitable access to learning devices amid the COVID pandemic and was one of the first in the country to reopen schools. Recognizing the importance of providing resources for the social and emotional health of students and staff, the state also collaborated with regional institutions of higher education and formed other public-private partnerships to provide free social and emotional learning courses for students.

Prior to his time in Hartford, Cardona worked for years in the same Connecticut school system he attended as a child. He started as a classroom teacher and then served as a school principal and assistant superintendent for teaching and learning. He is the recipient of the 2012 National Distinguished Principal Award for the State of Connecticut and the Outstanding Administrator Award from the University of Connecticut’s Neag School of Education.

Cardona earned a bachelor’s degree from Central Connecticut State University. He earned a master’s degree and a doctorate from the University of Connecticut.