CIE Degrees Earned in the 2021-2022 Academic Year

This year UMass returned to in-person graduation ceremonies.  The graduate commencement honored graduates from both the 2019-20 and 2021-22 years since there was no ceremony in spring of 2020.  As a result there were a much larger number of graduates – so many that the ceremony was held in the football stadium.  There were more than 1,000 Master’s graduates in attendance!


Master’s degrees were awarded by college groups with the candidates standing by their chairs.  Doctoral candidates were hooded by their academic advisors in front of the stage. 



One of the doctoral graduates, Koboul E. Mansour, was selected to be the student commencement speaker. In her speech she traced her personal journey from Egypt through her completion of her doctorate. She spoke about the extra challenges faced by international students in completing their degrees.


“Therefore, when we come here, we start looking for our people; we start building our village; we start cultivating an updated, yet continually shifting, sense of self. And as the years pass, we start wondering, ‘Who we are? Where do we belong? Will I stay here? Am I going to move back home? What is next?’ While I do not have all the answers to those questions, I can tell you this. Here, at UMass Amherst, I found the best friends, I found the people who I could call family, I found support, and I learned so much!”


Mansour continued, “I stand here today before all my fellow graduates who made it here today to say: I see you! I acknowledge your perseverance! I admire your tenacity! I recognize the sacrifices and the compromises you all have made to persist through graduate school. And you all should be extremely proud of yourselves! You made it! We made it.”


There were 3 doctoral graduates associated with CIE, one each from Afghanistan, Egypt, and Nigeria.


Yetunde Ajao (Nigeria)
The Role of Entrepreneurship Development in
Graduate Employment Outcomes: A Case Study
of Nigeria's Skill Acquisition and Entrepreneurship
Development (SAED) Program

Hassan Aslami (Afghanistan)
Financing Public Higher Education in Afghanistan:
Alternative Sources and Options

Koboul E. Mansour (Egypt)
World-Class Universities and the Imitation Game:
The Reality of the Global South