2022 commencement to be held on Memorial Field


Anna Kate Munsey , Managing Editor

It’s out with the old, and in with the new. The University of New Hampshire (UNH) undergraduates are saying farewell to the old model, and hello to smaller college-based ceremonies. UNH is switching up their commencement ceremonies, with some changes taking place as soon as this May. 


In September, the UNH Commencement Office announced they would permanently move to college-based commencement ceremonies. This came following the model’s success in 2021. Factors such as insurance against the weather and the ability for each student to walk across the stage played a role in the decision. 


“While we have enjoyed the opportunity to celebrate as one large university, the part of our ceremony that has been missing is the opportunity to individually recognize each student with having their name read as they walk across the commencement stage. The ceremony would just be too long if we tried to do that in a university-wide format. Switching to the college-based model, allows us to individually recognize each student’s achievements,” said Director of University and Special Events Megan Brunelle. 


For 2022, undergraduate commencement ceremonies will be held across two days. On May 21, the College of Life Sciences and Agriculture (COLSA) ceremony will take place at 10 a.m., followed by the College of Liberal Arts (COLA) at 1 p.m. The next day, the Peter T. Paul College of Business and Economics (PAUL) will have their ceremony at 10 a.m., followed by a combined College of Health and Human Services (CHHS) and College of Engineering and Physical Sciences at 1 p.m. 


While the new college-based model will take place in the Whittemore Center moving forward, this year’s ceremonies will happen on Memorial Field, UNH announced on Jan. 31. 


Having an outdoor ceremony this year may also alleviate some Covid-19 (coronavirus) concerns. If necessary, Brunelle said the university is prepared to implement “some or all of the policies in place at last year’s commencement including the requirement of face coverings, showing of vaccination status or a negative test, social distancing, and limited attendance.” 


There’s no word on who this year’s keynote speaker will be. Past speakers have included former presidents, journalists, actors and actresses, company CEOs and foreign policy experts. Check back at www.tnhdigital.com for more updated information in the coming weeks. 


At this time, there are no ticket or guest limits. Brunelle said this policy could change depending on Covid-19, but that each ceremony will also be livestreamed for anyone not able to attend.  


Students must fill out the intent to graduate and commencement registration forms in order to participate. These, and information regarding cap and gown orders can be found here. 


Photo courtesy of UNH CPA.