Commencement Again – 25 Years Later

By Kiera Reilly, C’93, Lisa Nass Grabelle, C’93, L’96, and Heidi Howard Tandy, C’92
One of many Penn traditions is the alumni parade of classes during Commencement. The University’s Commencement ceremony is traditionally held on the Monday immediately following Alumni Weekend.
Penn Commencement in Franklin Field

Penn Commencement in Franklin Field

Graduates gather in various spots around campus ahead of the ceremony and then march with their undergraduate or graduate school classmates down Locust Walk, past Van Pelt and College Hall, then across 34th Street, by the Engineering buildings and arrive at Franklin Field for the Commencement ceremony.
Lining Locust Walk as the graduates process is the alumni parade of classes.  Representatives from every undergraduate class year stand on either side of Locust Walk, holding their class flag and cheering for the graduates. There are two special groups among the alumni procession – the 25th and 50 reunion classes.
Penn Commencement alumni class representatives

Walking through the Alumni Class representatives in front of the Sweeten Alumni House on Locust Walk

Penn tradition honors the 25th Reunion class by inviting us to march in the commencement procession. We strongly encourage you to remain on campus through commencement. It is the happiest day of the year at Penn, and it is very special to see the new graduates proceed down Locust Walk, lined on either side by Penn Alumni.
Penn Commencement 1993 Hillary Rodham Clinton

Commencement at Penn 1993, marching past Commencement Speaker First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton and Penn President Sheldon Hackney

We invite you to re-live the happy day twenty-five years ago when we graduated from Penn by joining us and your fellow 1993 classmates and walking as a class in the alumni procession into Franklin Field for commencement. The deadline to register to join us is Sunday, April 1st. Click here to register now!
Penn Class of 1993 senior class board commencement

Led by class president Michael Scoops Rosenband and the Senior Class Board, the Penn Class of 1993 enters Franklin Field for Commencement, May 1993

Last year, member of the Class of 1992 marched in Commencement, and Heidi Howard Tandy, C’92, shared her thoughts with us:

The experience of walking with your class down Locust Walk in cap and gown isn’t just a once-in-a-lifetime experience; being able to march at your 25th reunion (and your 50th) gives you another moment to reconnect with your classmates on Commencement Morning, and celebrate the new graduates with applause, cheers and a magical Hurrah! Hurrah! And if you don’t remember what it was like to walk into Franklin Field on Commencement Day, here’s your chance to refresh your recollections!

Penn Commencement Class of 1992 25th reunion

The Class of 1992 celebrates their 25th Penn reunion by marching in Commencement, May 2017.

Class of 1993 President Lisa Nass Grabelle has represented our class many times at commencement. She highly recommends that you join us!
As our class president I have had the honor to march in graduation several times over the years, carrying our class flag in the alumni procession, as well as marching in 1996 at my Penn Law graduation with lots of fellow Penn Law/Penn ’93 grads.  To be among a literal sea of Penn graduates and alumni is a moving experience.  It reminds me of the excitement I felt the first time I marched during our graduation with my best friends and housemates (4049 Locust) by my side.  While marching today is so different since there are tons of cell phones being held up to capture the experience and no more Palladium to pass by, the Penn tradition is very much the same as it was for us in 1993, and I am sure way back for decades and decades.  I hope that many of you choose to join me and the Class of 93 as we march on Monday after reunion weekend to celebrate our 25th anniversary.  This is an honor the University bestows on us to be recognized for our special and BIG reunion!

Commencement Information

The University of Pennsylvania’s 262nd Commencement ceremony will take place on Monday, May 14, 2018 in Franklin Field at 10:15 a.m., and will be preceded by student and academic processions through campus. The ceremony will feature the conferral of degrees, the awarding of honorary degrees, greetings by University officials, and remarks by the Commencement speaker, Andrea Mitchell, CW’67, Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent, NBC News and Host of “Andrea Mitchell Reports,” MSNBC. To see the complete list of honorary degree recipients, click here.

If you are marching with our class, start time is 8 AM for Continental Breakfast and Robing. The procession across campus begins at 9 AM; with the ceremony beginning at 10:15 AM. Rain or shine. A light lunch is provided after Commencement in Sweeten Alumni House.

You can register to participant when you register for our 25th Reunion.

You must RSVP by April 1 to order regalia and be listed in the Commencement Program.


Penn Class of 1993 25th Reunion #93tothe25th

Penn Class of 1993 25th Reunion Countdown

The weekend of February 23 – 24, marked 11 weeks until the 25th Reunion of the Penn Class of 1993 (May 11 – 14, 2018)! Meet us at the Button!

Register NOW to attend our 25th Reunion!

Join us we count down the weeks to our reunion #93tothe25th:

  • Follow us on Twitter, Tumblr, and Instagram.
  • Classmates are invited to join our Facebook and LinkedIn groups.
  • Donate to The Penn Fund in honor of our reunion! We want to break the 25th reunion participation giving record and every gift matters!
  • Do you have old photos or mementos from our time at Penn? Photos of Spring Fling? Football at Franklin Field? Classes at DRL? We are taking a trip down memory lane and would love for you to share your memories with our class in a future post. Please email us!

Book Your Hotel Room for Alumni Weekend NOW!

The Marriott Downtown (where we had a Penn 1993 and a Penn Alumni room block) is sold out for Alumni Weekend. There are alternative hotels nearby. Some classmates are booking via AirBnB. We recommend booking ASAP! Please see our class website for additional details.


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Filed under 25th Reunion, Class of 1993, Commencement, Kiera R.

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