MIT announces in-person Commencement celebrations will take place May 26–28

MIT will continue to monitor COVID-19 situation while planning ceremonies

MIT announced dates and format changes for the two Commencement celebrations taking place this year — a OneMIT ceremony for Class of 2022 graduates and a celebration for the Classes of 2020 and 2021 — in a Dec. 23 email from Chancellor Melissa Nobles. These ceremonies will be the first in-person Commencements since 2019, as the past two ceremonies were made virtual by the pandemic.

The OneMIT ceremony for the Class of 2022 will take place the morning of May 27 in a 90-minute ceremony on Killian Court, which will feature the academic progression, President L. Rafael Reif’s charge to the graduates, an address by the Commencement speaker, and the turning of the Brass Rat.

Graduates will be welcome to invite guests, and both graduates and guests will be invited to a luncheon reception following the OneMIT ceremony. After the reception, “all graduating seniors will assemble on Briggs Field for a degree conferral ceremony,” Nobles wrote. At the degree conferral ceremony, the traditional reading of graduates’ names and taking of photos as they cross the stage to receive degrees will take place.

The times of the ceremonies will be announced “soon,” according to Nobles’s email.

In addition, advanced degree ceremonies for graduates of master’s and doctoral programs will be recognized in in-person school and college-specific ceremonies. Most of the ceremonies will take place May 26, though the locations and exact times will be announced later. At the individual ceremonies, guests will be welcomed and hoods will be presented to doctoral candidates.

On May 28, MIT will invite recent graduates from the Classes of 2020 and 2021 back to campus to “recognize their accomplishments with the in-person, on-campus events and revelry that the pandemic postponed in 2020 and 2021,” Nobles wrote.

Nobles added that she sincerely hopes the COVID-19 “does not require adjustments to our Commencement plans,” but that it is “important to acknowledge that significant shifts in the public health landscape” — including the prevalence of the Omicron variant and the rise in COVID-19 cases on campus, nationally, and globally — “could prompt us to pivot from our in-person celebrations.”

MIT is “carefully monitoring the situation and planning” for the best in May 2022, Nobles wrote.