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Commencement and Reunion Guide

The Week’s Events

May-June 2012

CommencEment week includes addresses by Harvard president Drew Faust and international-affairs expert Fareed Zakaria, Ph.D. ’93. For details and updates, visit


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Tuesday, May 22

Phi Beta Kappa Exercises, at 11, with Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Kay Ryan and orator Derek Bok, Three Hundredth Anniversary University Research Professor and former Harvard president. Sanders Theatre.

Baccalaureate Service for the Class of 2012, at 2, Memorial Church, followed by class picture, Widener steps.

Senior Class Family Dinner and Party, at 6. Athletic complex.



Wednesday, May 23

ROTC Commissioning Ceremony, at 11, with President Drew Faust and speaker TBA. Tercentenary Theatre.

Kennedy School Commencement Address by Christine Lagarde, managing director of the International Monetary Fund, followed by a reception. JFK Jr. Forum. Time TBA.

Senior Class Day Exercises, at 2, with the Harvard and Ivy Orations and a guest speaker TBA. Tercentenary Theatre.

Law School Class Day, 2:30, with U.S. Attorney General Eric H. Holder as speaker, followed by a reception. Holmes Field.

Business School Class Day Ceremony, 2:30, with speaker Sheryl Sandberg ’91, M.B.A. ’95, COO of Facebook, followed by a reception at 4. Baker Lawn.

Graduate School of Education Convocation, at 3. Radcliffe Yard.

Graduate School of Design Class Day, at 4, with designer Bruce Mau as speaker, followed by a reception. Gund Hall.

Divinity School Multireligious Service of Thanksgiving for the Class of 2012, at 4. Memorial Church. 

Masters’ Receptions for seniors and guests, at 5. The Undergraduate Houses.

Harvard University Band, Harvard Glee Club, and Radcliffe Choral Society Concert, at 8. Tercentenary Theatre.



Thursday, May 24

Commencement Day. Gates open at 6:45.

The 361st Commencement Exercises, 9:45. Tercentenary Theatre.

All Alumni Spread, 11:30. The Old Yard. Tickets available at

The Tree Spread, for College classes of 1919-1961, 11:30. Holden Quadrangle. Tickets required.

Graduate School Diploma Ceremonies, from 11:30 (time varies by school).

GSAS Luncheon and Reception, 11:30 to 3. Maxwell Dworkin lawn on Oxford Street. Tickets required.

Alumni Procession, 1:45. The Old Yard.

The Annual Meeting of the Harvard Alumni Association (HAA), 2:30, with HAA president Ellen Gordon Reeves ’83, Ed.M. ’86; Overseer and HAA director election results; Harvard Medal presentations; and speeches by President Drew Gilpin Faust and Commencement speaker Fareed Zakaria. Tercentenary Theatre.

Medical and Dental Schools Class Day Ceremony, at 2, with speaker Donald Berwick ’68, M.D.-M.P.P. ’72, former administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services under the Obama administration, former president and CEO, Institute for Healthcare Improvement, and lecturer on healthcare policy at HMS. HMS Quadrangle.



Friday, May 25

Radcliffe Day panel discussion, 10:30 to noon, “From Front Lines to High Courts: The Law and Social Change,” moderated by Harvard Law School dean and Smith professor of law Martha L. Minow. (For details on the panelists, visit Luncheon at 12:30, with a speech by Radcliffe Medal recipient Margaret H. Marshall, Ed.M. ’69, former chief justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, and now senior counsel, Choate Hall & Stewart LLP, and senior research fellow and lecturer at HLS. Radcliffe Yard.

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For updates on Harvard reunions, Radcliffe Day, and events for graduating seniors, visit, or contact the Harvard Alumni Association (124 Mount Auburn Street, Cambridge) at 617-495-2555;; or For information on all other professional- or graduate-school events, visit their respective websites.

The Harvard Information Center, Holyoke Center, is open every day except Sunday, 9 to 5 (telephone: 617-495-1573).