Class of 2018 waits for Commencement to begin

Celebrating the 113th Simmons Commencement

We're still buzzing with excitement from the 113th Simmons Commencement! In front of their friends and families, 301 undergraduate and over 1,000 graduate students received their Simmons degrees. This inspiring day included Commencement addresses from bestselling and highly decorated author Jacqueline Woodson and longtime non-profit leader Joan Wallace-Benjamin.

In our morning undergraduate ceremony, President Helen Drinan welcomed attendees and introduced the student speaker, Tozoe Marton '18, whose speech was selected out of a record number of submissions. 

Marton spoke of her journey from Ghana to Simmons and thanked her father and step-mother for fostering her passion for learning. Marton credited Simmons for linking this passion to "a lifelong purpose" and concluded with a call to action for her fellow graduates: "we must use the tools we have gained at Simmons to guide us and create positive change in the world."

2018 Class President, Maggie Belfi '18 was presented with the Joan Melber Warburg '45, '97HD Leadership Award. This honor is awarded to a Simmons senior who displays commendable leadership abilities and devotes these abilities to making positive change. 

In her undergraduate Commencement address, Woodson challenged the graduates to step out of their comfort zones and to help others whenever they are able. “You, my fierce Simmons Class of 2018, have a story to tell," said Woodson. "You have a right now, to do the work you were meant to do."

Woodson was presented with an honorary degree along with Frieda Garcia, the founding director of La Alianza Hispana and former executive director of United South End Settlements (USES).

A record number of Masters and Doctoral degrees were granted in the afternoon graduate Commencement ceremony.

During her graduate Commencement address, Joan Wallace-Benjamin encouraged graduates to become involved and use their abilities to make positive change in their communities:

"As you graduate and move into the next phase," said Wallace -Benjamin, "don’t just ask yourself what you want to be, but instead what problems you want to solve."

Wallace-Benjamin received an honorary degree along with the Honorable Leslie E. Harris, Associate Justice, Suffolk Juvenile Court (Ret.).

For more highlights from Commencement check out #Sims18 on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram! Congratulations to our 2018 Simmons graduates! 

Read More

Alumnae/i and Friends



Celebrating Our 2018 Graduates

Congratulations to our graduates!



Singing the Song of Simmons
Do you know the lyrics to this iconic Simmons tune?



Seniors Share: My Simmons Moment
Graduating seniors share their Simmons moments!



Juliette Mayers '01MBA Wins Gwen Ifill Trailblazer Award
Today, Juliette is being honored with the Gwen Ifill Trailblazer Award at the Black Alumnae/i Symposium!



Anna Brecke ’06GS, ’11GS Studies Gender Representation in Popular Media
Anna tells us about discovering her passion for theory and academia while at Simmons.



Maicharia Weir Lytle '05MBA Wins the Celebrating Our Greatness Award
On Sunday, Maicharia is being honored with the Celebrating Our Greatness Award at the Black Alumnae/i Symposium!



Alison Cody '08LS Takes Her Degree Outside of the Library
Alison tells us about her position as Manager of Customer Relations at the American Psychological Association.



Simmons Alumna Financially Empowers Women
We caught up with Kaitie Chakoian-Lifvergren '09 about her roles in women-centered organizations.



How Disruption Can Lead to a Brighter Future
School of Library and Information Science (SLIS) PhD Monique Ziesenhenne shares her experiences with library renovation.



Looking Back at the Simmons Leadership Conference
Take a look at all the excitement from the 2018 Simmons Leadership Conference!