Spring Commencement

Celebrating the Class of 2022

The Class of 2022 excelled in the classroom, served their community, conducted research, won national championships and made memories that will last a lifetime.

After years of hard work, late nights and a lot of determination in the face of a pandemic, they’ve made lasting impacts at Carolina and left their heelprints on campus.

  • Photos of nine students.

    This weekend is all about our graduates, but ahead of the ceremony, they reflected on the ways the whole Carolina community has helped them reach this milestone.

    The Class of 2022 says thank you
  • Graduates posing for a photo.

    Meet our soon-to-be Carolina alumni who are poised to become the next generation of leaders and take on the challenges facing the state, country and world.

    Meet the graduates
  • Shara He holding a laptop.

    More than 60 graduates of Carolina’s Class of 2022 will accept diplomas this weekend that include the innovative new data science minor introduced in the fall of 2021.

    Data science minor graduates first students

Meet your Commencement speaker

Acclaimed journalist and bestselling author Frank Bruni ’86 launched his journalism career as a student reporter at Carolina. Now, Bruni is returning to his alma mater to be the keynote speaker for the Class of 2022 Spring Commencement.

Bruni was a reporter for the New York Post and then the Detroit Free Press, where he covered the first Persian Gulf War and was named a Pulitzer Prize finalist in feature writing. From 1995 to 2021, Bruni wrote for The New York Times as a columnist, White House correspondent and chief restaurant critic. He now contributes opinion pieces and a weekly newsletter. He is now the Eugene C. Patterson Professor of the Practice of Journalism and Public Policy at Duke University’s Sanford School of Public Policy.

Read more

Photo by Duke University Sanford School of Public Policy

Honorary Degrees

  • Algenon L. Marbley '76

    Chief Judge Algenon L. Marbley is a federal judge on the United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio. Upon recommendation from Senator John Glenn, President Bill Clinton appointed Judge Marbley to the bench in 1997.

  • Millie Ravenel

    In 1979 Millie Ravenel, working with then Gov. James B. Hunt and his wife, Carolyn, became the founding executive director of the North Carolina Center for International Understanding. Their vision for the center, which operated as a public service project of the UNC System, was to demystify other nations and cultures in our increasingly interconnected world.

  • Eddie Smith Jr.

    Eddie Smith Jr., is chairman and CEO of Grady-White Boats, Inc., the world’s premier builder of outboard powered sport fishing boats ranging from 18 – 45 feet, based in Greenville, North Carolina. The company manufactures 27 boat models which are distributed both nationally and internationally through independently owned Grady-White dealerships.

Preparing for graduation

For graduates

Main University Commencement Ceremony
9 a.m., Sunday, May 8
Kenan Stadium

  • Please arrive in the Loudermilk Parking Lot at 7:30 a.m.
  • Graduates will enter the stadium through the tunnels

We are currently not requiring student registration or tickets as the ceremony will take place outside in the football stadium. Our plans are based on current public health guidance, and we will communicate as soon as possible if that should change.

View the schedule for school and departmental ceremonies. Please reach out directly to the school/department for their specific ceremony details.

The Graduate School’s Hooding Ceremony will take place on Saturday, May 7 at 9 a.m. in the Dean E. Smith Center. For more information, please go to The Graduate School’s website

We highly encourage August graduates to attend the December ceremony, especially with the changing covid protocols. Graduates are allowed to choose to attend the May ceremony instead, but please note that you are only allowed (registration not required) to attend one ceremony and your name will not appear in the May program.


2022 Commencement will be returning to one main ceremony in Kenan Stadium on Sunday, May 8 at 9 a.m. COVID-19 restrictions and safety protocols will be in place according to the current public health guidelines. The ceremony will also be livestreamed on several platforms for virtual participation or viewing.

Students are not required to register to attend in person and there will not be a ticketing process. As keeping with years past, the main Commencement ceremony does not include graduates’ names being called or them walking across the stage. These both take place at the departmental ceremonies due to time constraints.

Caps, Gowns, Announcements and Diploma Frames

Undergraduate and Graduate Students

Cap and gown (regalia) will be available to purchase online for shipping beginning on March 24 through April 15 at https://unchapelhill.shopoakhalli.com/purchasewizard/Welcome

Anyone that would like to purchase in-store will be able to do so starting March 24.

Individual Stoles and Tassels will be available for purchase at the Grad Fair on March 23, and in-store or online starting on March 24 on the Student Stores website.

Customized, more elaborate doctoral regalia can be ordered in-store or by contacting graduation@store.unc.edu. Orders for custom regalia can be placed year-round and take 7-8 weeks to ship once ordered. For guaranteed delivery by Spring 2022 commencement, the order deadline was March 13.

Customized graduation announcements can be purchased through Balfour (balfour.unc.edu). Generic announcements in packages of 10 may be purchased at Student Stores.

Class Ring Ordering Information – please visit balfour.unc.edu

Diploma Frame Ordering Information – order your diploma frame through Student Stores.

For other questions, please call 919-962-7239 or email graduation@store.unc.edu.

Senior Campaign

The Office of University Development invites seniors to support UNC-Chapel Hill through the Senior Campaign for Carolina. As Carolina students, you have been touched every day by private gifts to Carolina that maintain and enhance the University’s tradition of excellence. You can make a gift to any part of the University that is meaningful to you — your major, a professorship, a student organization, scholarships and student aid, or campus-wide programs. To make an immediate difference where it is needed the most, consider supporting The Carolina Fund. All gifts to Carolina are included as participation in the Senior Campaign. To learn more about how Carolina benefits from private support from alumni and friends, please visit the Annual Giving website.

Make your gift today.


For families

  • Gates open at 7:30 a.m.
  • Gates 1, 2, 3, 5 and 6 will be open for guests
  • Clear bags are encouraged but not required.
  • Hydration stations will be available, please bring your own refillable water bottle

Hotel Accommodations and Visitor Information

We recommend making hotel reservations as early as possible. The Chapel Hill/Orange County Visitors Bureau can help you find the type of accommodation appropriate for your stay.

Chapel Hill/Orange County Visitors Bureau Resources:

Chapel Hill Downtown Partnership Resources:

UNC Visitors Center Resources:

Useful Contacts

Accessibility services

General Information

To best accommodate the various needs of our visitors at Commencement, Carolina is providing two options for accessible seating. We will be following all of the UNC Community Standards.

Stadium Seating and Parking

Limited accessible seating for wheelchair users or those who cannot ascend or descend stairs is available in Kenan Stadium with a reservation. Parking information will be emailed the week of the main commencement ceremony but will be in close proximity to Kenan Stadium.

Concourse Level Wheelchair Seating (Reservation Required)

The Concourse Level Wheelchair Section is reserved, and each reservation is for one wheelchair user plus up to three companions. Reservations are first-come, first-served. Visitors in need of accessible seating are strongly encouraged to arrive to the stadium no later than an hour before the ceremony begins in order to ensure you are in your seat for the start of the ceremony. Gates open at 7 a.m.

This section is located near the Kenan Football Center between Gates 3 and 5. ADA-accessible restrooms are located near the seating, as well as water stations; please bring a water bottle to fill or to bring your own water.

This section faces the main stage and provides a direct view of the event. Please understand this event is in an outdoor stadium and there will be exposure to the elements. A limited number of accessible seats are available for families of graduates, and only a small portion of those are shaded. If you are concerned about exposure related to the weather or the elements, please know that the ceremony will be livestreamed at commencement.unc.edu.

NOTE: Once the Concourse Level Wheelchair Section is filled, those requesting wheelchair seating will be assigned to a secondary wheelchair seating area.

If you are not a wheelchair user, but cannot ascend or descend stairs on the shuttle or in the stadium please contact access@unc.edu to explore seating options.

Concourse Level Wheelchair Parking (Permit Required)

Guests who request Concourse Level Wheelchair Seating will park in a designated lot close to Kenan Stadium. A parking permit for the lot will be emailed to guests who need wheelchair seating closer to the Commencement ceremony.

Limited Mobility Seating (No Reservation Required)

Guests who can ascend and descend limited stairs are asked to arrive early and identify a seat near the concourse level that best fits their needs; this seating is available on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Limited Mobility Seating Parking (No Reservation Required)

Guests seeking Limited Mobility Seating or who have mobility challenges may wish to make use of the accessible shuttle transit options available from the Bowles, Manning and Cardinal Parking Lots; from these lots accessible Carolina Livery Shuttles will convey guests to a Gate 6 drop-off point. Alternatively, guests may park at the Friday Center; Chapel Hill Transit (also accessible) will convey guests to a Gate 2 drop-off point. Please note that shuttles will not be running from/to any other parking lots/decks. State issued handicapped hangtags can be used in these lots and in others even where there is not an accessible shuttle.

Return transit will be available from these drop-off points up to 45 minutes following the main ceremony or from The Old Well or FPG Student Union (and from the Dean Smith Center for guests parked at The Friday Center) between 12:30 and 3 pm for those attending departmental ceremonies.

Please check the UNC Transportation and Parking website for latest updates.

Please plan accordingly based on your seating plans.

There are handicapped accessible parking spaces in each of the lots on a first come first serve basis. Guests can drop off at the shuttle departure points.

We are not responsible for any wheelchairs, walkers, crutches or other mobility aids left at the stadium. To help ensure your medical device is not taken accidentally, we ask that you please tag or label your items with name, address and phone number. When the ceremony concludes, we ask for your patience as individuals retrieve their mobility aids and exit this area.

ADA-accessible restrooms are located throughout the stadium.

Departmental and individual school ceremonies

Commencement Accessibility Services does not coordinate accessible seating or parking for departmental ceremonies. For information about individual departmental or professional school ceremonies, guests should check the Commencement Information website for information regarding on building location, available parking and building access, or please contact the school or department of your graduate.

If students need accessible seating, please contact Commencement Accessibility Services at access@unc.edu


Neither ARS, EOC nor the University maintains a supply of wheelchairs for Commencement ceremonies. Guests with difficulty walking are strongly encouraged to bring their own wheelchair or to rent one. Wheelchairs are generally available for short-term rental from medical supply stores and some pharmacies.


Each commencement ceremony will be livestreamed and captioned and available for viewing. The livestream link will be posted on the Commencement website the day of the ceremony.


Each ceremony will have open captioning in the Stadium. A livestreaming transcription of the audio portion of the ceremony audio will be displayed on the large reader boards for guests with difficulty hearing.

Sign Language Interpreting

A sign language interpreter will be provided. If you or your guest require access, please contact access@unc.edu.

Commencement Accessibility Services

If you have any questions about any other accessibility-related issues, please contact: access@unc.edu


Additional information

  • The livestream link and digital program will be available on the Commencement website on the day of the ceremony.
  • Parking information can be found at move.unc.edu
  • If you have accessibility needs, please contact access@unc.edu