Commencement Speakers View Full Schedule of Events Frequently Asked Questions Livestreams & Photos
Livestreams, Graduate Video Clips, and Photos
Archived livestreams of the Commencement Ceremony, Baccalaureate, and Multicultural Stole Ceremony can be found below, along with a photo gallery of Commencement Weekend. In addition, individual videos of each graduate receiving their diploma are available to view and download at this link. A photographer capturing images of graduates will be in touch via the mail in early June with opportunities to purchase prints.
Commencement Photo Gallery
Multicultural Stole Ceremony
Commencement Speaker and Honorary Degree Recipient
National Teacher of the Year and alumnus Kurt Russell ’94 will deliver the Commencement address and receive an honorary degree at The College of Wooster Commencement Ceremony for the Class of 2023.
A 25-year veteran of the classroom, Russell teaches history and is head coach of varsity boys’ basketball at Oberlin High School in Oberlin, Ohio, where he was born and raised. He also serves as faculty advisor for the student-led Black Student Union, whose work has led to positive impacts for students across racial groups. Kurt was first inspired to become a teacher in middle school when he encountered his first Black male teacher. In a time when many are trying to quiet diverse voices and gloss over atrocities of the past, Mr. Russell is standing up for independence of thought and exemplifying social and intellectual responsibility. His classes include African American history, which he has taught since the late 1990s, and Race, Gender and Oppression, a class he developed.
As the 2022 National Teacher of the Year, he advocates for classrooms to better reflect the students within them—from a curriculum that reflects their backgrounds and identities to a more diverse teaching profession.
Kurt earned his Bachelor of Arts degree with a major in history and a minor in Black studies from Wooster and a Master of Education in curriculum and instruction from Ashland University. He continues to take courses in child development at Oakland City University.
Senior Class Speakers
Ethan Dasilva, majoring in political science (comparative politics) and education, is from Morton Grove, Illinois. During his time at Wooster, Dasilva was a teaching assistant for the Political Science Department, a member of the swim team (backstroke and freestyle), secretary of Scot Council and a member of the Social Justice and Equity Council, and president of Wooster Future Educators. Dasilva’s Independent Study is titled, “How Does a City’s Migrant Identities Affect Urban Governments’ Implementation of Affordable Housing Policies?” Next fall, Dasilva plans to teach 5th grade STEM outside of Evanston, Illinois.
Zoe Seymore, majoring in psychology and minoring in math and Chinese is from Fort Worth, Texas. At Wooster, Seymore has been involved as secretary of the BIPOC Performing Arts Alliance, a member of the COW Dance Company, Women of Images, and is co-founder and co-president of Wooster Adoptee Student Union. She also helped to organize the March for Asian Lives protest on campus in spring 2021. Seymore’s I.S. is titled, “Overlooked Adoptees: The Effects of COVID-19 Racism and Ethnic Identity on the Psychological Well-Being of Chinese Transracial Adoptees in the United States.” After graduation, Seymore will be heading to Taiwan to be an English teaching assistant with the Fulbright U.S. Student Program. Upon returning to the U.S., she plans to attend graduate school to be able to work in a clinical setting with adoptees and Asian Americans.
Britta Treu, majoring in communication studies, minoring in music, and pursuing a pathway in entrepreneurship, is from Auburn Township, Ohio. Treu is a four-year member and senior co-captain of Women’s Lacrosse, first chair and trumpet section leader in Scot Marching and Symphonic bands, a member of Shades of Gold a capella group and communication club, and president of Wooster Christian Fellowship. She also has received the Theodore Williams Prize in Music. The title of her I.S. is “Face to Face: Finding Confidence in my Voice in a Technology-Centered Generation.” After Wooster, Treu hopes to pursue her masters in communications and eventually work in broadcasting. Her immediate entrepreneurial motivation is to create her own lacrosse business for young women in Cleveland and northern Maine.
Invocation & Benediction Speakers
Rev. Joy E. Bronson '07
Joy E. Bronson ’07 graduated from The College of Wooster with a degree in English and Africana Studies. After completing her undergraduate degree, Bronson focused her work in social justice advocacy and just community formation. She served with AmeriCorps program City Year; as community & program coordinator for the Community Property Impact Corporation’s poverty solutions collaborative with The Ohio State University; as training director of Ohio Court Appointed Special Advocates; and as a minister of mission & ministries in Columbus, Ohio.
A fourth-generation reverend, Bronson earned her Master of Divinity from Vanderbilt Divinity School with a focus in vision, play, and transformational change; her work integrates theology, equity, community-centered design, and evaluative learning to support organizations more consciously practicing missional alignment with their values and communities they serve.
She presently serves as the Lilly Endowment grants coordinator for two $1 million congregational vocation and justice initiatives at American Baptist College (Tennessee), and as the pastor of vocational & strategic alignment at Glencliff UMC, a Nashville, Tennessee justice-seeking mission church. Bronson is the founder of Vision:Justice, which facilitates transformational alignment for greater community impact, and incubates just community initiatives.
Diane Holt Frankle '75
Diane Holt Frankle ’75 is a Trustee of The College of Wooster and chairs the Board of Trustee’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee, which provides leadership and support for the Board’s efforts to build competencies, skills, and capacity to engage and lead effectively within, across, and about difference, she also serves on the Board’s Trusteeship and Governance and Mission and Outcomes committees.
Frankle is chairman of the board, chief operating officer and co-founder of Building Bridges Together, a California nonprofit corporation promoting interfaith dialogue among Christians, Jews, and Muslims to develop meaningful relationships and understanding. Since 2013 she and her husband have been promoting interfaith dialogue programs.
Frankle is an active panelist in the Interfaith Speaker Bureau for Islamic Networks Group. She serves on the San Francisco Advisory Board of Facing History and Ourselves, a nonprofit which challenges students and teachers to use history to confront bigotry and hate. She is a senior fellow in the American Leadership Forum — Silicon Valley.
Frankle practiced corporate law in Silicon Valley for more than 30 years, focusing on mergers and acquisitions and corporate governance work with boards of directors and management as a partner with Ware & Freidenrich, Gray Cary Ware & Freidenrich, DLA Piper, Kaye Scholer, and Arnold & Porter; she retired from the practice of law in 2018 to focus on Building Bridges Together. Diane received her J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center, magna cum laude, in 1979 and her B.A. from Wooster in Political Science.
Class of 2023 Commencement Schedule of Events
|Saturday, April 29, 2023|
|2-4 p.m.||Lavender Graduation & Reception||Freedlander Theatre|
|Thursday, May 11, 2023|
|11 -11:30 a.m.||Tree Planting Ceremony||Oak Grove|
|4-5:30 p.m.||Commencement Rehearsal and Split Party|
Learn all about your big day, followed by a champagne toast. Afterwards, enjoy ice cream sundaes, music, and a fun raffle! Seniors receive their class gift. This event is for graduating seniors only.
|Gault Recreation Center, Scot Center|
|8-9:30 p.m.||Commencement Concert featuring Wooster Chorus||McGaw Chapel|
|Friday, May 12, 2023|
|11 a.m.-12:30 p.m.||Senior Awards Recognition||McGaw Chapel|
|2-3 p.m.||Senior Music Hour||Gault Recital Hall, Scheide Music Center|
|4-5 p.m.||Baccalaureate (Livestream)|
NOTE: In a change of tradition, Baccalaureate will not include a formal procession and no regalia will be required. Seniors, faculty and staff are encouraged to sit with their families and friends.
|5:30-7 p.m.||POSSE Celebration Graduation||Wilson Governance Room, Scot Center|
|8-10 p.m.||Commencement Celebration for Seniors and Families, Faculty and Staff|
This event is for seniors and their families as well as faculty and staff of the College. Featuring Pizza, Beer and Wine, DJ, and more (vegan/vegetarian options). Each guest 21 years and older will receive two drink tickets.
|Tent, Lowry Center Back Patio|
|Saturday, May 13|
|9-9:30 a.m.||Phi Beta Kappa Initiation and Reception||Gault Recital Hall, Scheide Music Center|
|10-11:30 a.m.||Multicultural Stole Ceremony (Livestream)||McGaw Chapel|
|10:30 a.m.-1 p.m.||President's All-Campus Picnic||Lowry Center|
|12:15 p.m.||All graduating seniors are required to line up in Timken Gymnasium inside Scot Center NO LATER than 12:15 p.m., to process from the back of Gault Recreation Center. Faculty who are processing should gather inside the Auxiliary Gym alongside Timken Gym at 12:15 p.m.||Timken Gymnasium, Scot Center|
|1-3:30 p.m.||Commencement Ceremony (Livestream)||Gault Recreation Center, Scot Center|
|Sunday, May 14|
|10 a.m.||Residential Spaces will close for all graduating students on Sunday May 14th, 2023 at 10:00 a.m.|
Frequently Asked Questions
Class of 2023 graduating seniors may invite as many guests as they wish because tickets are NOT required for any event during Commencement Weekend, including Baccalaureate, Commencement, and the All-Campus Picnic on Saturday (i.e., Celebration for Seniors and Families on Friday evening and lunch on Saturday).
Commencement for a full graduating class typically lasts approximately 2.5-3 hours; therefore, the Class of 2023 ceremony will begin at 1 p.m. and should conclude at approximately 3:30-4 p.m. on Saturday, May 13.
Gowns were distributed at the beginning of the academic year to members of the Class of 2023 and were worn by seniors at Convocation in August; these same gowns are to be worn by graduating seniors at Commencement. If the original gown has been lost or destroyed, seniors will be required to purchase a replacement gown by contacting Lesia Lorenzetti in the College Bookstore (firstname.lastname@example.org); the cost for a replacement gown is $20.
The College will provide caps and tassels to all graduating seniors at no charge, and these will be distributed in early May.
Class of 2023 t-shirts with the names of seniors on the back will be available for sale, along with flowers and teddy bears, just outside the entrance of the Scot Center on Commencement day. Items are also available for pre-order through the Wooster Bookstore website.
For the Class of 2023 Commencement, the College will be providing shuttle vans to and from Scot Center on Saturday, May 13. These shuttle vans will be available to and from the following area hotels and First Presbyterian Church:
- Best Western (243 E. Liberty)
- Comfort Suites (965 Dover Road)
- Days Inn (789 E. Milltown Road)
- EconoLodge (2137 Lincoln Way East)
- Hampton Inn (4253 Burbank Road)
- Hilton Garden Inn (959 Dover Road)*
- Market Street Inn (356 N. Market Street)
- Rodeway Inn (2055 Lincoln Way East)
- St. Paul Hotel (203 South Market Street)
- First Presbyterian Church (621 College Ave.)
Shuttles will run every half hour, beginning at 10:00 a.m., with a final run to campus at 12:30 p.m. Return shuttle vans to each designated location will depart from Scot Center at half-hour intervals from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. Guests will be dropped off and/or picked up at Scot Center. (Please note: the shuttle vans are not available on Friday, May 12 or Sunday, May 14.)
*May be under construction
All on-campus parking lots will be open for guests on a first-come, first-served basis.
Handicap parking is available in the Lowry Center lot near Papp Stadium, and off Beall Avenue in the Ebert Center lot.
- On Saturday, May 13, courtesy golf carts and drivers will be available beginning at 10:00 a.m. at Ebert Art Center, Holden Hall, Galpin-Taylor, and Wagner Hall parking lots as well as Babcock Hall to transport guests to Scot Center.
- Courtesy golf carts and drivers will also be available following Commencement until 5:30 p.m.
During Baccalaureate and the Commencement Concert, reserved seating will be available for guests using wheelchairs on the main floor of McGaw Chapel, and ushers will be available to direct families to the appropriate section.
On Saturday, May 13, individuals using wheelchairs can find seating in the front row or on the ends of the aisles in Gault Recreation Center inside Scot Center. Ushers will be available to assist. Elevators are available in the building.
If you have further questions about Commencement Weekend 2023, please send your question(s) to: email@example.com.