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Live On, University: OU Celebrates the Class of 2022

Live On, University: OU Celebrates the Class of 2022

students celebrate as balloons drop at the end of the ceremony

The University of Oklahoma recognized the academic achievements of the Class of 2022 at the 130th Commencement ceremony, held the evening of Friday, May 13, at the Lloyd Noble Center.

Class of 2022: By the Numbers


Degrees Conferred

to students who completed their coursework during the spring 2022 semester, as well as summer and December 2021 graduates



Grads Entering Health Care

of the total degrees conferred this academic year, over 1,100 of those students graduated from the seven health professions colleges at the OU Health Sciences Center



Students Graduating with a Perfect 4.0 GPA

one of the largest 4.0 classes in school history



Raised for 2022 Class Gift

in support of the University Counseling Center, the OU Food Pantry and the Miracle Mindset College Access Program

With pageantry and tradition at the forefront, Commencement was a time of both celebration and reflection as members of the Class of 2022 transition from students to alumni.

Some of the night’s best moments, including a video of the ceremony, are featured below. 

Sidhvi Reddy, banner carrier for the Dodge Family College of Arts and Sciences. Banner carriers are selected by their deans to represent their colleges.

The Kiowa Black Leggings Society present the colors during OU’s 130th Commencement ceremony.

“You are our 130th class to celebrate graduation,” OU President Joseph Harroz Jr. said during his remarks. “Like all who came before you, your OU experience has changed, challenged and inspired you. Tonight, one chapter ends, and another begins – you move forward no longer as students, but as alumni with tremendous responsibility and boundless opportunities.”

Student banner carrier holds a flag
Student making a heart shape with her hands
student wearing "first generation" banner

A doctoral graduate embraces his faculty advisor after being hooded. At Commencement, the placement of the doctoral hood over the graduate’s head signifies the successful completion of their studies.

One of this year’s doctoral graduates was Sister Rosemary Nyirumbe, who was recognized by OU in 2021 with an honorary degree for her humanitarian work in east Africa.

Attendees also heard from this year’s Commencement speaker, David Brooks. One of the nation’s leading critical thinkers and op-ed columnist for The New York Times, Brooks offered timely advice to graduates as they embark on the next chapter of their lives.

“Some people think America is a nation in decline, and it will be your generation that determines whether that is true,” Brooks said. “The fate of America will be importantly determined by the quality of the way we see each other and treat each other in the smallest acts of daily life. Yours is a morally passionate generation. I ask you to focus part of your passion on the faces right in front of you. I ask you to show kindness, curiosity and emotional courage so you can illuminate the faces of those around you.”

The university presented honorary degrees to five outstanding individuals in recognition of their extraordinary achievements and generous service to the university and others. From left: James J. Mulva, Edrye Riggs Doman (accepting a posthumous honorary degree on behalf of her uncle, R. Lynn Riggs), Susan Stroman, J.C. Watts Jr., Commencement speaker David Brooks and President Harroz.

The ceremony concluded with the singing of the OU Chant and Oklahoma!, as guests and graduates displayed lights on their phones as a salute to the Class of 2022.

Relive the Moment

A video of OU’s 2022 Commencement is available below. To access the recorded livestream videos for the college convocations, click here to find the page for each college.

Every year, a team of students from the Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communication produces a video celebrating the graduating class. Led by Professor Scott Hodgson, Gaylord Hall Productions debuts its annual video salute at Commencement. Watch this year’s tribute to the Class of 2022 below.

Photos by Travis Caperton, Ethan Stewart and Philip Lyons

Article Published:  Wednesday, May 18, 2022