View photos: Gratitude, smiles abound at UW-Green Bay’s 2023 Fall Commencement ceremonies

Chancellor Alexander hands a diploma to a new graduate at the Winter 2023 Commencement ceremony.

The Weidner was buzzing with positive energy, immense joy and smiling graduates for UW-Green Bay’s 108th Commencement Ceremony, Saturday, December 16, 2023 on the Green Bay campus. More than 480 graduates crossed the stage to receive their diploma.

A sense of gratitude and tremendous pride from graduates and their families was felt during this special commencement day. For Graduating Class Speaker Rachel Bartell ’23, who majored in Democracy and Justice Studies, it was time to share her gratitude for the University that gave her the opportunity to rise like a Phoenix. “In other words, UWGB helped turn me into a version of my best self, though of course, one has to keep working on themselves consistently in order to grow and I am no exception.” 

Washington Post reporter Laura Meckler inspired graduates, and took 30 seconds of silence within her remarks to ask graduates to rest in gratitude. “I hope for you that getting here was half the fun! And now you get to share it with the people you love, and who love you back. Because of course none of us achieves great things like graduating from college by ourselves. No one walks the hard paths all alone. So I’d like you to stop for a moment and think about a person who helped you make it to this day, to this moment. Someone who believed in you. It can be a parent, a sibling, a friend, a teacher – somebody who really means something to you.” 

To sit in this moment of gratitude was profound – for both graduates and the captivated hundreds in the audience.

Schreiber President and CEO Ron Dunford addressed the afternoon graduates with a reminder of our greatest currency. Time. His description of time as “more valuable than gold; more fleeting than the wind” set the stage for eight pieces of advice that he wished he would have heard at his commencement ceremony. Wise words, especially these two pieces of advice: “Stay curious. Stay relevant.”

As with the majority of speakers during the day of celebration, afternoon Graduating Class Speaker, Electrical Engineering Environmental Engineering Technology major Sean Babasin ’23 was “immensely proud…and grateful for a path at UWGB.”  His parting thoughts to his classmates? He wished everyone future success and reminded graduates that UWGB is truly “…blazing a future for all.”

Congratulations to the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Class of 2023!

Please view images via the Flickr gallery below:


Click to advance slideshow or view the album on Flickr.

Commencement - December 16, 2023

– Photos by Josh Buntin and Dan Moore, UW-Green Bay Marketing and University Communication

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