Through both rain and sunshine, the Class of 2022 concluded their time as undergraduate students at Penn on Monday. In comparison with the virtual commencement ceremony for the Class of 2020 two years ago and the limited attendance celebration for the Class of 2021, this year's ceremony is marked by many signs of post-pandemic life. Families and friends filled the stands of Franklin Field, and graduates enjoyed each other's presence without the separation of masks.
With a little bit of precipitation, the return of former Penn President Amy Gutmann, and much laughter and tears, here's a look into the commencement ceremony of the Class of 2022.
The ceremony was preceded by a procession of graduates down Locust Walk beginning at 9 a.m.
Families and friends lined Locust Walk to congratulate graduates and celebrate.
A section of 34th Street was closed off for the procession of graduates to cross safely.
Family members stood on the steps of the Towne Building of the School of Engineering and Applied Science and waved as the graduates walked by.
Graduates paused to pose for a photo with a police dog before entering Franklin Field.
This year's ceremony, unlike last year's, did not require graduates to wear masks or socially distance.
Former Penn President Amy Gutmann, who now serves as U.S. Ambassador to Germany, walked alongside fellow honorary degree recipients Ken Burns and Mary Frances Berry.
Graduates waved towards the camera as the ceremony was broadcasted live on the internet.
Interim President Wendell Pritchett conferred upon Gutmann an honorary degree.
Graduates were called to stand up by deans of different schools as their degrees were recommended to be conferred upon them by President Pritchett.
Award-winning documentary maker Ken Burns, who was this year's commencement speaker, spoke about the great responsibility that the graduates bear as they embark on their journeys to become leaders of their communities and the world.
Led by the Glee Club, graduates sang The Red and Blue as undergraduates for the last time.
After the conclusion of the ceremony, graduates gathered and celebrated outside Franklin Field.
Laughter, tears, and the spirit of celebration were palpable in the air.
Crowds of graduates, families, and friends slowly dissolved after many hugs and goodbyes, bringing an end to commencement festivities.