— by Jordan Cameron, Marketing & Communications Specialist
A collage of photographs showing Moore graduates smiling Cecelia Fitzgibbon smiling at a student

Moore’s Class of 2022 celebrated at the College’s 173rd Commencement on Sunday, May 15, 2022. This year’s ceremony returned to the white tent in Aviator Park after two years of virtual celebrations.

This year also marked the final Commencement for President Cecelia Fitzgibbon, who will retire after ten years as president in June. 

Photo of President Cecelia Fitzgibbon addressing the crowd from the podium. She is looking down and smiling.

“For the past few years, Moore has been [our graduating seniors’] creative home where they have experienced and achieved so much,” Fitzgibbon said. “During their education, they proved their resilience and strength in the midst of a global crisis by continuing to find ways to express their vision at home and in their community.” 

Photo of commencement speaker Ximena Varela speaking at the podium, looking down and smiling.

Commencement speaker Ximena Varela received an Honorary Doctorate in Fine Arts. Varela has championed innovative, inclusive and connected practice in arts and cultural leadership in higher education. In her moving commencement speech for the 2022 graduates, she recited the poem “Instructions on Not Giving Up” by Ada Limón: 

More than the fuchsia funnels breaking out

of the crabapple tree, more than the neighbor’s

almost obscene display of cherry limbs shoving

their cotton candy-colored blossoms to the slate

sky of Spring rains, it’s the greening of the trees

that really gets to me. When all the shock of white

and taffy, the world’s baubles and trinkets, leave

the pavement strewn with the confetti of aftermath,

the leaves come. Patient, plodding, a green skin

growing over whatever winter did to us, a return

to the strange idea of continuous living despite

the mess of us, the hurt, the empty. Fine then,

I’ll take it, the tree seems to say, a new slick leaf

unfurling like a fist to an open palm, I’ll take it all.

Photo of Shannon Ferrari addressing the crowd from the podium.

Valedictorian Shannon Ferrari encouraged their fellow classmates to revel in their accomplishments and everything they have gone through over the last four years together. 

Photo of Carolina Marín Hernández addressing the crowd from the podium.

The recipient of the 2022 Happy Fernandez Endowed Women’s Leadership Prize Carolina Marín Hernández spoke to the crowd about the importance of building community. 

A photo of Laila Islam receiving flowers at the podium

Laila Islam received the Marian Locks Endowed Award, which is awarded to a Moore graduate of any discipline to help launch their career after completing their undergraduate studies. 

View the full video of the 173rd Commencement ceremony on YouTube: 

Photos: Steve Weinik.