Commencement 2012

The university’s 61st Commencement ceremony will be held on Sunday, May 20.

Brooks, Lawrence send grads off with high hopes and humor

Commencement speaker David Brooks and President Fred Lawrence sent the Class of 2011 off into the world with good humor, serious challenges and upbeat assurances that, while life was about to change dramatically, graduates were leaving Brandeis with the necessary tools for building happy lives.

About 8,000 students, parents, faculty and friends filled Gosman Sports and Convocation Center for the ceremony, which featured a virtuoso solo performance by cellist Yo-Yo Ma, one of six recipients of honorary degrees. Ma played "Prayer" by Ernest Bloch and "Gigue" from Johann Sebastian Bach's Third Suite.

Before and after the ceremony, the campus swirled with crowds of gowned graduates and visiting relatives and friends from around the world.

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