Today was graduation at the University of Chicago, or rather, as someone pointed out, “convocation.”  Here are the students lining up to march into the venue. Fortunately, the weather was lovely, though a bit hot; they hold graduation outdoors whether it’s sunny or rainy (the stage is covered, and they provide ponchos to everyone if it rains):

The line extended across 57th Street and in front of Regenstein Library:

And a panorama, which still shows only part of the lineup:

The ceremony (it was hot and the seats in the sun were largely empty):

And the happy graduates. The first shot shows my colleague Manyuan Long (left, in pink shirt) embracing his son, who just graduated.

Congrats to all graduates; I know what a happy time this is—the successful completion of four years of hard work (more for many grad students)!


  1. dph
    Posted June 10, 2017 at 12:25 pm | Permalink

    I love graduation. Many of my colleagues complain about having to attend (it’s in our contract–we don’t take turns, we all attend unless excused by the provost) but I wouldn’t miss it for the world. Fortunately, because of one of my responsibilities, I get to be right up front assisting in the hooding–so I get to see all the grads I know up close and personal. I look forward to it every year. Plus (is this embarrassing?) I get a little musty eyed from Pomp and Circumstance.

  2. Filippo
    Posted June 10, 2017 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

    Gaudeamus, igitur. Vivat academia! Vivant professores!

  3. Ken Kukec
    Posted June 10, 2017 at 2:08 pm | Permalink

    In honor of UC’s graduating class and the 102nd anniversary of Saul Bellow’s birth, how about the great opening line from my favorite novel by this UC professor of the Committee on Social Thought:

    “I am an American, Chicago born — Chicago, that somber city — and go at things as I have taught myself, freestyle, and will make the record in my own way: first to knock, first admitted; sometimes an innocent knock, sometimes a not so innocent.”

    The Adventures of Augie March

    Unlike Augie, Bellow was Canadian born, but otherwise was probably the most Bellow-like of the great man’s protagonists.

    • George
      Posted June 10, 2017 at 2:28 pm | Permalink

      My interest in going to UofC was sparked by Bellow and Philip Roth. Amazing how a New York Jew could know the mind of a Chicago teenager at an all boys Catholic school. Portnoy’s Complaint really spoke to me.

      I wanted to be a writer. I ended up a math major. I knew my limitations.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted June 10, 2017 at 4:45 pm | Permalink

        Roth’s novella Indignation is an interesting study of a Jewish kid (who, apparently, is narrating the story from the grave, after being expelled and then killed in the Korean War) attending a WASPy college in Winesburg, OH (Sherwood Anderson’s old stamping ground).

        I’ve always thought of Bellow, Roth, and Malamud as forming a holy trinity of sorts. (The way DeLillo and Pynchon form a dynamic duo of a different sort.)

  4. Posted June 10, 2017 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

    Congratulations to all graduates from reputable universities everywhere. You make us proud and you should be proud of yourselves. I am so fortunate in having a grandson graduating from UC, Davis shortly. Way to go 2017 grads!

  5. Craw
    Posted June 10, 2017 at 11:04 pm | Permalink

    This was an *integrated* ceremony?? You’ll never match Harvard that way.

  6. Tim
    Posted June 11, 2017 at 7:07 am | Permalink

    Have any of the students complained yet about the cultural appropriation of giving out ponchos when it’s raining?

  7. Posted June 12, 2017 at 11:56 am | Permalink

    I’ve wondered for a while why some universities speak of “convocation”, some of “graduation”, some of “commencement”, some of “marching ceremony”, etc.

    Any thoughts?

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