2020 Graduate Commencement: Student Speaker Contest

Ashley Carpenter

Deadline: March 9, 2020
The Graduate School is delighted to announce our annual Graduate Commencement Student Speaker Contest! One graduate student will be awarded the honor of addressing the audience at an iconic university event—Graduate Commencement. Celebrating the many academic achievements of the university's newest advanced degree recipients, Graduate Commencement will draw more than 5,000 graduates, faculty, university administrators and spectators to the Mullins Center on Friday, May 8th, 2020. The winner of the Graduate Commencement Student Speaker Contest will be a focal point of this major celebration, claim a special place in UMass history, and win a $500 prize. Do you want to be recognized as the voice of the 2020 UMass graduate class? Then don’t miss the opportunity to compete for this unique honor!

Contest Details
All UMass graduate students who earned or will earn an advanced degree in September 2019, February 2020, or May 2020 are eligible to compete in this contest.

To enter the competition, eligible students should compose a speech approximately two pages long (double spaced)—or three to four minutes in speaking time—and email it as a Word or PDF attachment to student-speaker@grad.umass.edu by Monday, March 9, 2020, at 5:00PM.

Entrants should include in their attachment a cover page providing the following information: their name, graduate program, degree type (PhD, DNP, MA, MBA, MS, etc), phone number, and email address.

The best speeches will broadly appeal both to graduating students and the Commencement audience. Speeches may reflect on academic or extracurricular experiences, life as a UMass graduate student, the significance of earning a graduate degree, making a transition to a new phase in life, or other relevant subjects.

A selection committee will choose a group of finalists based on the quality of their written speech. Finalists will then be asked to perform their speeches before the selection committee (either in person or via skype) at a later date. Following these auditions, the speaker will be selected. The winning student will be honored as the university's Graduate Commencement Student Speaker and receive a prize of $500.

Please direct any questions about this contest to student-speaker@grad.umass.edu.