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Celebrating the Class of 2024: Whitman College’s 138th Commencement

Whitman College students at commencement.

Whitman College graduates will soon cross the stage in front of Memorial Building and mark a significant milestone in their lives—at Whitman College’s 138th Commencement.

On Sunday, May 19, more than 300 scholars majoring in disciplines from across academic divisions will receive their diplomas.

In 2020, many of these Whitties missed gathering with family and friends to celebrate their high school graduations because of COVID-19, and they started their college careers online before being able to come to campus in person for the Spring 2021 semester.

Here’s a preview of how these graduates, their families and friends and the Whitman community will commemorate this joyous occasion—and celebrate the Class of 2024’s resiliency, accomplishments and bright futures.

Pause for Reflection

A longtime tradition at Whitman is the Baccalaureate ceremony, held this year on Saturday, May 18 at 2:30 p.m. in Cordiner Hall.

Hosted by the Office of Religious and Spiritual Life, Baccalaureate is an hour-long celebration featuring music performances by graduating music majors and brief readings, prayers and reflections from a wide range of religious traditions including humanist/non-religious perspectives.

The keynote speaker at the 2024 Baccalaureate will be the Venerable Thubten Chodron, an innovative American Buddhist teacher and founder of Sravasti Abbey, north of Spokane, Washington.

At the Podium: Cecilia Kang ’94

The 2024 Commencement keynote address will be delivered by Cecilia Kang ’94, who graduated from Whitman College with a major in English Language and Literature and immediately pursued a career in journalism. She has worked for the Associated Press-Dow Jones as a Bureau Chief in Seoul, South Korea, as a Staff Writer for The San Jose Mercury, and as a senior technology correspondent at The Washington Post.

Now living in the Wasington, D.C. area, Kang is an award-winning National Correspondent at The New York Times, where she reports on the intersection of technology and public policy. She is also the co-author of the book “An Ugly Truth: Inside Facebook’s Battle for Domination,” a New York Times bestseller.

Senior Speaker

Class of 2024 senior speaker Adeshola Mau '25

Adeshola Mau ’24

Each year, the senior classes chooses one of their own to say a few words at commencement. This year, representing the Class of 2024 will be Adeshola Mau ’24, who is graduating with a degree in Art-Environmental Studies. During her time at Whitman, Mau served as a Greek Allies Program representative, was on the executive committee of Kappa Alpha Theta as Vice President for Membership, Vice President for Education, Event Director and Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. Outside of Whitman, Mau also volunteered with Story Time and at the Blue Mountain Humane Society.

Class of 2024 Banner image depicting a valley.A Banner Year

The Class of 2024 banner was designed by Pavita Sidhu ’24, who is graduating with an English major and Art minor. Sidhu looks forward to continuing her studies at the University of British Columbia in the fall.

View Commencement

A livestream of the commencement ceremony will also be available to watch, beginning with the processional at 10:50 a.m.

Published on May 10, 2024
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