Commencement 2011

Post-Event Coverage Highlights

Words, photographs and video capturing the happy assembly of scholars, students, family and friends at Commencement 2011

Commencement Spotlight
From left, Don Dumayas ’11 of Honolulu, Hawaii, and Davina Dukuly ’11 of Lowell, Mass., process onto the historic Quad as Commencement begins. 

Commencement report: The only failure is the failure to persist

Hopped up graduates“You will fail — you should fail,” Evelynn Hammonds, dean of Harvard College, told the Bates College class of 2011 on May 29. “But if you stick with it, and let your peculiarities become assets, you will succeed.” Read more…

Scholar-Athlete Society inducts 28 seniors, four alums and retired coach Chick Leahey ’52

In addition to its inductees, the seventh annual ceremony of the Bates College Scholar-Athlete Society welcomed Dan Lebowitz, the executive director of the Center for the Study of Sport in Society at Northeastern University, who delivered the keynote address and received honorary membership to the society. Read more…

Video: Seniors gathering for Commencement describe Bates in a word

kibbe-screenshotVideographer Josh Ajamu ’14 of Breinigsville, Pa., and Bates Magazine editor Jay Burns headed out to Alumni Walk at 9 a.m. on Commencement day to ask one question of a few graduating seniors (and one nonagenarian): What one word best describes Bates? Watch more…

Slide show: Commencement Day 2011

web_110529_commencement_1970Always uplifting, the 2011 Commencement ceremony had a conversational, convivial spirit, as presenters on stage passed laughs around, friends and families jostled for camera angles and cheered on their graduates, and the clouds finally parted, allowing unfiltered sunshine to illuminate the 145th Bates College Commencement. Watch more…

Slide show: Baccalaureate 2011

110528_baccalaureate_1475-aGraduates and their families enjoyed the annual Baccalaureate service, a religious and spiritual event that featured “Foundations That Move Us” as its theme. Watch more…

Video: Seniors reflect on defining Bates experiences

Watching classmatesAt a recent Trustee luncheon, nine Bates seniors reflect on their defining Bates experiences.

Watch more…

The Baccalaureate Service

110528_baccalaureate_1475-aPresident Hansen’s final Baccalaurate address offers thoughts on the how a liberal arts education helps graduates answer the pivotal career question: “What comes next?” Also, see the Baccalaureate Program and the blessings offered to graduates from family and friends.

Video: President Hansen’s Commencement 2011 welcome

Faculty and Honorands processPresident Hansen offers the Commencement welcoming, noting that the happy day “honors you, Bates graduates. It honors the skills and values you have fashioned during these years of self-construction, and it honors our enduring faith in your to lead us into the future.” Watch more…

Video: Commencement 2011 honorand remarks

Evelyn HammondsVideo of Commencement 2011 remarks by honorary degree recipients Frank Glazer, pianist and Bates artist in residence; Evelynn Hammonds, scholar of science and race who is dean of Harvard College; and Robert Langer, MIT bioengineer and prolific inventor: Watch more…

“What I hope for you, like the strongest of your forbearers, is that you will do what is right for you and what is right for the world.”

Evelynn Hammonds, Doctor of Humane Letters

Commencement 2011: Transcripts of honorand remarks

Robert LangerTranscripts of Commencement 2011 remarks by honorary degree recipients Frank Glazer, pianist Bates artist in residence; Evelynn Hammonds, scholar and dean of Harvard College; and Robert Langer, MIT bioengineer and prolific inventor. Read more…

“Each of us is unique. We are dealt a certain hand a birth, over which we have no control. But we have a lot to say about how we play the game.”

Frank Glazer, Doctor of Music

Video: Commencement 2011 honorand panel discussion

honorand-screen-shot-2011The evening before Commencement, the honorary degree recipients gather in the Olin Arts Center Concert Hall to share personal insights into their achievements.

Read more…

Commencement 2011: Who are the honorands?

Frank GlazerAn internationally renowned pianist based at Bates, a leading scholar on the intersection of science and race, and a distinguished MIT researcher and inventor spoke and received honorary degrees during Bates College’s 145th commencement ceremony on May 29. Read more…

“Maybe the only thing that I had going for me was that I just hadn’t read the literature saying that it was impossible.”

Robert Langer, Doctor of Science

The Class of 2011: Who they are, where they’re from, what they studied

Degree AwardedOf the 437 students that Bates College graduated on Sunday, May 29, 240 are women and 197 are men. According to figures released on May 27, 44 of the students are from Maine and 29 from foreign countries. Thirty-seven of the United States are represented in the class of 2011. Read more…



Invitations will be mailed to parents in March.  After that mailing seniors will be notified that they may pick up additional invitations at 301 Lane Hall between 8:30 and 4:30pm, Monday – Friday.  The College Store, located in the basement of Chase Hall, has Commencement Announcementsavailable for purchase.

Tickets and Seating

Tickets are not required for any Commencement weekend events with the exception of the champagne reception following Commencement. Seating at all events is on a first-come, first-served basis. There is no reserved seating except for graduates and participants. If you would like to send someone ahead to hold seats that is fine, as long as he or she stays with the seats while waiting. In fairness to all families and friends we do not allow the posting of reserved signs or the covering of seats.

Each graduate will be issued three complimentary tickets to the champagne reception. (UPDATE 5-19-201, Complimentary tickets will be issued to graduates Tuesday, May 24 – Thursday, May 26, between 11am and 2pm in the Fireplace Lounge in Commons.) Graduates will be required to have a ticket for the champagne reception. The three complimentary tickets are intended to admit the graduate and two guests. Additional tickets are available for purchase by sending an e-mail Please include in your e-mail your name, the number of tickets you would like to reserve, and the name of your graduating senior.  Tickets are $16 for adults and $8 for children 10 and under.  Tickets will be available for pick-up and payment at the information table in Commons on Friday and Saturday between 10am and 6pm.  There are a limited number of tickets available for purchase so please reserve your tickets early to ensure that everyone in your party who wants to is able to attend. UPDATE (5-27-2011) WE HAVE HAD A NUMBER OF CANCELLATIONS FOR THE CHAMPAGNE RECEPTION AND NOW HAVE A LIMITED NUMBER OF TICKETS AVAILABLE ON A FIRST COME, FIRST SERVED BASIS. IF YOU HAVE NOT RESERVED TICKETS, OR NEED MORE TICKETS IN ADDITION TO WHAT YOU ALREADY RESERVED, YOU MAY PURCHASE ADDITIONAL TICKETS AT THE INFROMATION TABLE IN COMMONS IN THE FIREPLACE LOUNGE BETWEEN 10AM AND 6PM ON FRIDAY, MAY 27 AND SATURDAY, MAY 28.

Guests with Special Needs

If your party includes someone in a wheelchair, please contact an usher, who will make a space available in the ground level seating area.  A limited number of wheelchairs are provided  for use by guests on a first come, first served basis. These wheelchairs will be located on the Coram Library Quadrangle near the flag pole and must be returned to that location following the ceremony.

The Commencement exercises are signed. The sign language interpreter is located in front of the stage on the right side just below the podium where the President and other speakers give their remarks.


The Baccalaureate service and Commencement will be held outside regardless of the weather so please come to campus prepared.  Only in the rare instance of severe weather (e.g. lightning or high winds) will we postpone the start of one of these events.  Should an event need to be postponed, we will announce it immediately on the main page of the website


Parking on and near the campus is limited. There are no special parking passes issued for Commencement weekend.  Parking on campus and city streets is permitted according to posted parking regulations.  A campus parking map can be found at .  The campus faculty/staff parking lot on the corner of Campus Avenue and Nichols Street (directly across the street from the Carnegie Science Building, #8 on the parking map) is designated for handicapped parking on Saturday and Sunday of Commencement weekend.  A member of our Security staff will be present to monitor the use of this lot for the Baccalaureate service on Saturday and Commencement on Sunday.  You must have a state or doctor issued license plate or permit to park in this lot.


Bates hires a commercial studio, GradImages, to photograph each senior receiving his or her diploma as well as one photo before and one after .  Seniors and their families will be contacted in mid-June about ordering prints.

Leaving Campus

Graduating seniors must vacate on-campus residences by 5:00 pm on Sunday, May 29, 2011.  For security reasons, any seniors who need more time to depart their residences must make that request in advance with the Housing Office.

Please don’t hesitate to contact Heather Bumps in the Office of the President at 207-786-6102 if you have any questions.