Undergraduate and Graduate Commencement

Class of 2020 Celebration

In accordance with our health and safety guidelines, and in adhering to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s restrictions for gatherings to remain under 250 people, it remains unsafe to bring the entire Class of 2020 to campus for a graduation celebration this fall.  

Remaining committed to celebrating our Class of 2020 this fall, Academic Affairs at Arcadia has organized a Drive-Thru celebration for Saturday, Sept. 26 and Sunday, Sept. 27, during which graduates can safely receive their diplomas and be recognized for their accomplishments. Graduate and undergraduate members of the Class of 2020 must sign up individually and can plan to celebrate with friends and affinity groups such as student organizations, athletic teams, or majors.

Each graduate who signs up for one of the many available slots on Sept. 26 and 27 will participate in a car parade around campus, during which you will:

  • Wear your cap and gown.
  • Circle campus in your designated vehicle with family and guests.
  • Hear your name announced.
  • Walk on stage to receive your diploma, cords, and/or awards.
  • Take photos at designated spots before exiting campus.

Slots are first-come, first-served. We encourage students who are in need of specific times or dates to register as soon as possible. If you are interested in processing with friends, roommates, or your cohort, coordinate a time together and sign up as soon as possible.   

If you would like to participate and are still in need of a cap and gown, please complete the appropriate form:  graduate or undergraduate.

If you have not signed up and would like to, please follow this link.  If you do not have access to a vehicle and would like to participate in the celebration, or to request more information, please contact Lisa Stephens at stephensl@arcadia.edu

For those who have secured their spot, additional information about the celebration will be emailed to you and shared on this site.

Use #ArcadiaClassof2020

We encourage all graduates, friends, families, and community members to continue using #ArcadiaClassof2020 throughout the celebration. Show us decorated cars, creative campus shots, socially distant selfies—the more creative and fun, the better. We’ll share and award Amazon gift cards to our favorite posts.

Facebook Frames

We have options for graduates, families, and alumni. Click “Update” on your profile picture, select “Add Frame,” and search for Arcadia University.

Share Your Story

Share your favorite memories, post-graduation plans, and Arcadia “glow up” through our Instagram Story Challenges. 


Social Stickers

#ArcadiaClassof2020 stickers are available on Instagram stories, Snapchat, and Facebook Messenger. Just search for Arcadia University!

Gradawaytion Instagram stickers

Honorary Degree Recipients

Arcadia is excited to present honorary doctoral degrees to U.S. Representative Madeleine Dean (PA-4th) and human rights activist John Prendergast. Both Representative Dean and Mr. Prendergast have been part of the Arcadia University community for years, and they have dedicated their professional lives to addressing injustice and inequality locally, nationally, and internationally.

Congresswoman Dean

In 2018, Congresswoman Madeleine Dean was elected to represent Pennsylvania’s 4th District, which includes Montgomery and Bucks Counties. In Washington, Dean serves on the powerful Judiciary and Financial Services Committees, championing progressive priorities like public education, combating addiction, equal rights, access to healthcare, protecting the environment, ethics, criminal justice reform, and gun violence prevention, among other issues.

After studying politics and public service at the University of Pennsylvania’s Fels Institute of Government, in 2011 Dean ran for and served as Abington Township commissioner before winning a special election to the Pennsylvania State House the following year. From 2012 to 2018, she served as a state representative for Pennsylvania’s 153rd District, where she was an outspoken champion of public education, healthcare access, environmental protection, equal rights, ethics, criminal justice reform, combating addiction, and ending gun violence. Following the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., in 2012, Dean founded and co-chaired PA-SAFE Caucus, an active coalition of legislators and advocates dedicated to ending gun violence. She also worked closely with local officials to bring home millions of dollars in infrastructure projects that promote safer, greener, more livable communities. 

Born and raised in Glenside, Pa., Dean graduated from La Salle University and earned a law degree at Widener University. Following graduation, Dean practiced law with the Philadelphia Trial Lawyers and went on to open a three-woman law firm in Glenside. She also was a member of the English faculty at La Salle and has contributed pieces to The Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia Daily News, Patriot-News, and other publications.

Watch Representative Dean's message to the Class of 2020:

John Prendergast

John Prendergast is a human rights and anti-corruption activist as well as a New York Times best-selling author who has focused on peace in Africa for nearly 40 years. He co-founded, with George Clooney, The Sentry, an investigative initiative chasing the assets of African war criminals and their international collaborators, and whose Board of Directors includes Clooney, Don Cheadle, Matt Damon, and Brad Pitt. 

Prendergast is also founder of the Enough Project, a policy organization aimed at countering genocide and crimes against humanity. Under the Enough Project umbrella, Prendergast has helped create a number of initiatives and campaigns, including the Darfur Dream Team Sister Schools Program, the Raise Hope for Congo Campaign, and Sudan Now campaign. 

Prendergast has worked for the White House, the State Department, two members of Congress, the National Intelligence Council, UNICEF, Human Rights Watch, the International Crisis Group, and the U.S. Institute of Peace.  He was part of the mediation team that negotiated the end to the Ethiopia-Eritrea war, supported President Nelson Mandela’s mediation in the Burundi peace process, and contributed to other peace processes in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Angola, Sudan, and Somalia.  

Prendergast has received several awards for his humanitarian work, including the United Nations Correspondents Association Global Citizen of the World Award; the Lyndon Baines Johnson Moral Courage Award; the U.S. Department of State Distinguished Service Award; and the Center for African Peace and Conflict Resolution Award. He is the author or co-author of 11 books and is or has been a visiting professor at several colleges and universities, including Stanford University, Yale Law School, Columbia University, Duke University, and American University in Cairo.

Congratulations, Class of 2020!