WALTHAM, Mass., May 21, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — For over a hundred years, Bentley University has celebrated each new class of graduates as they head off into the world, but this year’s commencement ceremony — the first held on campus after a two-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic — felt especially electrifying. Students and parents embraced in celebration, friends posed for pictures with maskless faces, and faculty and trustees sat together — less than six feet apart — as graduates crossed the stage to sweeping cheers.
While celebrating together as a community felt new to many after the last couple of years, the commencement drew upon Bentley’s time-honored traditions and rich history. Faculty and students processed onto the football field to the sound of “Pomp and Circumstance,” a tune accented by the supportive cheers of family, friends, mentors and classmates. Large video screens on either side of the stage showed videos, and students reacted happily as they spotted the familiar faces of classmates and friends. Congratulatory messages submitted via social media from friends and family across the world scrolled across the screen. “A milestone has been reached today,” one message said. “Never give up! Continue learning, trying, and accomplishing as you travel along.”
On a sunny and warm spring day, the university awarded undergraduate degrees to 1,154 students representing 36 states and territories and 36 countries. Approximately 8,000 people attended the university’s 103rd undergraduate commencement which was held on May 21, 2022, on the football field on South Campus. A livestream option was offered for loved ones near and far who were unable to attend in person.
E. LaBrent Chrite, in his first commencement since becoming president on June 1, 2021, greeted the crowd and commended the graduates for overcoming obstacles as they pursued their undergraduate degrees during the pandemic. “You have set new benchmarks for what can be expected from a…