Perseverance was a common theme heard at Lafayette College’s 188th Commencement ceremony Sat., May 20, as more than 600 graduates crossed the stage to receive their diplomas. 

During the ceremony, honorary degrees were presented to Daniel E. Cohen, Esq. ’65 and Leslie F. Muhlfelder ’81. Award-winning television play-by-play announcer and sports journalist Beth Mowins ’89, H’18 delivered an inspirational Commencement address that embodied the perfect union of her decades of experience as a sportscaster with nods to Shakespeare, Gandhi, Mark Twain, former teammates and coaches, lifelong friends, and the Marquis de Lafayette.

The College also announced a new award in honor of Mowins’ achievements in journalism: the Elizabeth Mowins ’89 Women’s Leadership Award, which will honor and assist future graduates who show exemplary commitment to the advancement of women in underrepresented areas.

One of the highlights of the ceremony was the College’s treasured tradition of the George Wharton Pepper Prize winner displaying one of the most precious artifacts from the College’s Special Collections: Marquis de Lafayette’s sword. Fatimata Cham ’23, this year’s recipient, was selected among 10 nominees as the senior “who most nearly represents the Lafayette ideal.” Cham, who majored in government and law and women’s, gender, and sexuality studies with a minor in religious studies, earned a prestigious Harry S. Truman Scholarship in 2022. A tireless advocate for injustices against girls and women around the world, Cham credits her parents for inspiring her to speak out against injustices.

Photo galleries

Celebrating the Class of 2023

Enjoy a selection of photographs captured at Commencement, held on the Quad Sat., May 20.

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Watch the ceremony

Lafayette College's 188th Commencement

Full recording of the ceremony is available to view.

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