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Senior Class Speaker

Being selected as the Senior Class Commencement Speaker is one of the highest honors a graduate can achieve. This role carries great responsibility as it addresses students, faculty, staff, and family members during the Commencement ceremony to convey a message of reflection, inspiration, and celebration. The Senior Class Commencement Speaker Selection Committee, in conjunction with the Dean of Students and Dean of the Faculty Offices, will invite seniors to apply for the role of Senior Class of 2023 Commencement Speaker during the spring semester.

Eligibility Requirements

Graduating students wishing to apply to be the Senior Class Commencement Speaker must meet the following criteria:

  • Applicants must be Seniors graduating in May 2022.
  • Applicants must be current full-time undergraduate students.
  • Applicants must have a minimum 2.00 cumulative grade point average at the time of submitting the application.
  • Applicants must be in good academic and disciplinary standing. Previous suspensions or dismissals from Lake Forest College will result in loss of eligibility. All applicants must provide permission for the Office of Student Affairs and the Academic Honesty Judicial Board to share any information related to their status.
  • Applicants must commit to attend the Commencement Ceremony on Saturday, May 7.

Submission Process

Eligible and interested students are required to submit an online application through my.involvement. A completed application must include:

  • A written draft of the speech, not to exceed 500-600 words in length.
  • A link to a Zoom video recording of the applicant delivering the full speech. The video recording should be 4-5 minutes in length.

Speech Guidelines

Applicants should compose a commencement speech that is between 500 and 600 words in length and is no longer than 5 minutes. A successful speech is one that embodies the essence of the Lake Forest College student experience. The speech can reflect your personal experiences at the College, but it should also be relatable to all graduates, faculty, staff, and guests in attendance. The speech should highlight what makes Lake Forest College special, share common experiences, celebrate common achievements, and inspire fellow Foresters to be life-long members of our community. Creativity and humor are encouraged.

The successful applicant will be expected to work with designated faculty members in the weeks leading up to Commencement to refine the written speech and practice their presentation.

Selection Process

A Selection Committee with representation from the faculty, staff, and student body will review all the applications and will select three finalists that will be invited to in-person auditions. After the in-person auditions are held, the Committee will select one student to be the Senior Class of 2022 Commencement Speaker.

The Selection Committee will consider the following when making their selection:

  • Clarity of message
  • Inclusion of shared experiences of Lake Forest College students.
  • Appeal to a broad audience.
  • Length of speech (appropriate word count and delivery length).
  • Applicant’s delivery of speech (well-prepared, engaging, stage presence).

Important Dates

March 28: Applications are due by 5 p.m.

April 12: In-person auditions at 4 p.m.

April 15: Senior Class of 2022 Commencement Speaker is selected

May 7: Commencement ceremony

Apply to be the Senior Class Commencement Speaker