On Sunday, May 14, Carnegie Mellon University held its 125th Commencement ceremony in Gesling Stadium on the Pittsburgh campus. A total of 6,933 degrees were conferred, including 378 doctoral, 4,809 master's and 1,746 bachelor's.
After the formal procession, Rev. Mike Holohan, chair of the Council of Religious Advisors and pastor for The Commonwealth of Oakland, gave the invocation, followed by an address from CMU Board of Trustees(opens in new window) Chair David Coulter(opens in new window).
“Because you are Tartans, I believe that you have the foundation to make a positive impact in our society and in our world,” Coulter said. “Your CMU experiences have allowed you to gain so much: deep knowledge in your fields of study; the skills to build relationships and collaborations with people whose backgrounds are perhaps different than your own; and an expanded worldview that has opened your eyes and hearts to new perspectives — both of others, and of yourself.”
Carnegie Mellon President Farnam Jahanian(opens in new window) next took the podium to congratulate the graduates, welcome the audience and recognize the CMU faculty who have accepted emeritus status. Jahanian then introduced CMU faculty who were named as University Professors. University Professors are distinguished by international recognition and for their contributions to education, artistic creativity and/or research. These individuals exemplify this high level of achievement and commitment to the university and the broader academic communities.
Watch Carnegie Mellon's Commencement 2023.
Prithu Pareek, the president of the Undergraduate Student Senate(opens in new window), who graduated with his bachelor of science degree in electrical and computer engineering(opens in new window) from the College of Engineering(opens in new window), was the day’s student speaker.
“At CMU, we have been given the compass to navigate our future. Our time here has helped us to develop the skills and acquire the knowledge necessary to turn our aspirations for impact into a tangible reality,” he said. “With chances to learn from and teach with world-renowned professors and conduct groundbreaking research, unique traditions like Booth and Buggy, and the hundreds of student orgs on campus like Carnegie Mellon Racing, Scotch‘n’Soda and Senate, we've had a vast array of opportunities to find our own path and passion.”
Carnegie Mellon Provost and Chief Academic Officer James H. Garrett Jr.(opens in new window) presented the 2023 Honorary Degree recipients(opens in new window) and cited their achievements. Jahanian then awarded all candidates their degrees and doctoral hoods.
Honorary Degree Recipients
Fred Eversley (E 1964), artist — Doctor of Fine Arts
Patrick Gelsinger, CEO, Intel Corporation — Doctor of Science and Technology
Lt. Gen. Gina Grosso (TPR 1986), assistant secretary for human resources and administration/operations, security and preparedness, United States Department of Veterans Affairs — Doctor of Public Service
Judith Light (A 1970), actor/producer — Doctor of Fine Arts
David Shapira, director, Board of Directors, Giant Eagle, Inc.; chairman, David S. Shapira Foundation — Doctor of Business Administration
Jahanian introduced the day’s keynote speaker, Honorary Degree recipient and Intel CEO Patrick Gelsinger, highlighting Gelsinger’s Pennsylvania roots and decades-long career in technology. Gelsinger imparted his advice to the graduates: find mentors and listen to them; write a mission statement and live it; and find something you are good at, that you love doing, and do it with people you enjoy.
Gelsinger shared his path to becoming the CEO of Intel, how he never lost his vision and drive, how technology has infiltrated nearly all aspects of everyday life, and how this class of CMU graduates can help ensure that technology is used to benefit humanity.
“As we embark on the next phase of this wonderful journey of life, you are the superheroes who will embrace these superpowers as the basis for innovations we cannot even begin to imagine yet. Join me in shaping them as a force for good, improving the lives of every single human on the planet through the magic of silicon and digitization,” he said. “When technology is a force for good, it truly is magic.”
Jahanian then delivered his own charge to the graduates. He told them to:
Be relentless in the pursuit of knowledge.
Seek out perspectives other than their own.
Have faith in our shared humanity.
“I want to remind you that our future is still being written.” Jahanian said. “There is extraordinary potential out there that has yet to be harnessed — so much good that can be done, so many powerful stories to be told, and so many solutions we can engender together.”
Burcu Akinci(opens in new window), Paul Christiano Professor and Department Head, Civil and Environmental Engineering
Lorrie Faith Cranor(opens in new window), FORE Systems Professor, Engineering & Public Policy, and School of Computer Science, Director and Bosch Distinguished Professor in Security and Privacy Technologies, CyLab Usable Privacy and Security Laboratory, co-director, MSIT-Privacy Engineering Masters Program
Greg Lowry(opens in new window), Walter J. Blenko, Sr. Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering
Mark Stehlik(opens in new window), Teaching Professor Assistant Dean for Outreach; co-founder of CMU CS Academy, director of the CS Undergraduate Program
Michael J. Tarr(opens in new window), Kavčić-Moura Professor of Cognitive and Brain Science, head, Department of Psychology, professor of psychology and the Neuroscience Institute, professor of machine learning (Courtesy)
Farnam Jahanian takes a selfie at Commencement.
As Commencement Weekend is in full swing in Pittsburgh, @CarnegieMellonQ celebrated last week. Dean Michael Trick noted that the “Class of 2023 know how to face change and drive progress in a way that will make the world a better place.” #CMUGradhttps://t.co/j8r5M3HpXg pic.twitter.com/rQ7eubivlz
— Carnegie Mellon University (@CarnegieMellon) May 14, 2023
The ceremony concluded with the official conferral of all doctoral, master’s and bachelor’s degrees from the seven schools and colleges; university-wide, inter-college, and joint-degree programs; and Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar(opens in new window), which held its commencement ceremony on May 8.
Jahanian then put his cell phone on a selfie stick to take a photo of himself with a stadium full of new CMU graduates.
“Once again, on behalf of the entire CMU community, congratulations on your outstanding accomplishments! Let’s hear it one more time for our Tartan graduates!” he said.