Call for Commencement Senior Speaker

One of the most meaningful moments in the Bates Commencement ceremony is the address delivered by a senior class member. The senior speaker reflects on their Bates experience and speaks on behalf of the class. It’s a great honor and a wonderful opportunity to share your thoughts about what Bates means to you.


Your speech should be reflective of the excellence and rigor of a Bates education.

A great speech blends the specific (a personal story) with the general or universal (world of ideas, your broader communities).

Your speech should be respectful of the Commencement occasion, and all the community gathered.

Your speech should be 5 to 7 minutes in length.


A selection committee with representation from staff and seniors will review all submitted speeches and select three finalists who will be invited to deliver their speeches in person. The Senior Speaker Committee will select the speaker to recommend to the president. The president makes the final decision.

The speaker will work with the Commencement staff to edit and refine their speech.

The speaker who is selected will present an address that is an authentic expression of an experience or way of thinking formed by Bates.

The speech will be delivered at Commencement Sunday, May 26, 2024.


Please submit your speech as a PDF to Edili Lopez ( by the deadline stated below. Your file name should include your first and last name (i.e., John_Smith_SeniorSpeaker).


If you have any questions, please contact Assistant Dean Edili Lopez (