Type: School event
Host: Ford School

2022 Ford School Commencement

Date & time

Apr 30, 2022, 4:30-6:15 pm EDT


The Ford School is proud to celebrate the achievements of the graduating classes of 2022! The Charge to the Class will be delivered by the dynamic writer, climate activist, and indigenous leader Julian Brave NoiseCat.

The Ford School Commencement Ceremony will be held this year outdoors in Elbel Field. We'll build a temporary venue with accessible flooring for the event. 

There will be a captioned livestream for guests viewing remotely.

About Julian Brave NoiseCat

Julian Brave NoiseCat, a member of the Canim Lake Band Tsq’escen and a descendant of the Lil’Wat Nation of Mount Currie, is a writer and filmmaker currently based in the Pacific Northwest. A fellow of New America and the Type Media Center, his first book, We Survived the Night, will be published by Alfred A. Knopf. He is concurrently co-directing his first documentary, which follows the search for unmarked graves at the residential school his family was sent to in Williams Lake, British Columbia. NoiseCat's work has been recognized with numerous awards including the 2022 American Mosaic Journalism Prize, one of the largest cash prizes in journalism, which honors "excellence in long-form, narrative or deep reporting on stories about underrepresented and/or misrepresented groups in the present American landscape." In 2021, he was named to the TIME100 Next list of emerging leaders alongside the starting point guard of his fantasy basketball team, Luka Doncic.

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Graduation events

Ford School Commencement Rehearsal (required for all graduates)
Wednesday, April 20, 2022
2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Elbel Field and Sports Coliseum

Rackham Graduate Exercises
Friday, April 29, 2022
10:00 AM
Hill Auditorium

University of Michigan Commencement
Saturday, April 30, 2022
10:00 AM
Michigan Stadium

Ford School Commencement
Saturday, April 30, 2022
4:30 PM - 6:15 PM (Seating opens at 4:00 PM)
Elbel Field

Ford School Graduation Reception (family and friends welcome!)
Light refreshments will be provided.
Saturday, April 30, 2022
6:30 PM - 7:30 PM
Weill Hall

Information for graduating students



Tickets will not be required this year at our large outdoor venue. However, graduates still need to RSVP.


In accordance with Rackham rules, students who graduate during the academic year (i.e., the previous December, in April/May, or the following August) will be eligible to participate in the Ford School's Commencement ceremony and walk across the stage. This includes Ford School students receiving BA, MPP, MPA, or PhD degrees. Barring a request for an exception, these are the only students who will be eligible to participate in the ceremony. Please contact Jordan Long, [email protected], if you would like to request an exception.

Academic attire

Academic attire is required for the Commencement ceremony. All students are responsible for purchasing a gown, cap, and tassel. Masters and PhD students are also responsible for purchasing an academic hood. The color of the hood for public policy is teal. These items are available at the following stores: Barnes and Noble @ University of Michigan, Barnes and Noble @ North Campus, The M Den, and Michiganensian Yearbook beginning mid-March.

The Ford School has some academic attire for loan on a first-come, first-served basis, which will be available starting in April. You will be required to sign each item out with the understanding that you'll return the borrowed items after Commencement. The gowns, hats, and hoods will be available for pick-up from the Office of Student & Academic Services during business hours.

Weather guidance

The Ford School Commencement Ceremony is scheduled to take place on Elbel Field, rain or shine. That will put us at the mercy of Ann Arbor spring weather, just like we’ll be at Michigan Stadium earlier that morning! In the event of severe weather, the ceremony may be shortened, suspended, or concluded. Given the size of the ceremony, it is not logistically feasible to move the ceremony to an indoor location. These security measures are in place to provide a safe environment for everyone, and your cooperation is appreciated.

In the case of light rain or other non-severe weather, the ceremony will continue as planned, so please encourage your family and friends to dress appropriately. Please note: umbrellas are not permitted to avoid interference with the site-lines of other guests, but raincoats and ponchos will be allowed.

Frequently asked questions

Click here to read answers to frequently-asked questions about our ceremony and additional celebrations.

Information for Ford School Commencement guests


Accommodations in and around Ann Arbor for commencement weekend require reservations well in advance. For a list of hotels, motels, and bed and breakfasts in the Ann Arbor vicinity, please visit: https://www.annarbor.org/hotels/


Parking is at a premium around campus and especially during commencement weekend. Please allow ample time to find parking.

All U-M parking lots and structures will be open to the public beginning at 9:00 a.m. on Friday, April 29 through Sunday, May 1. The open U-M lots on this map closest to Elbel Field include W39, W40, W41, and W32. The parking structures near Weill Hall (including S8 near the business school) will also be open, and are a short walk from Elbel Field. The central campus parking map linked above also identifies which lots offer accessible parking. 

Paid parking is also available in a number of public lots around town as well. For a map of Ann Arbor public parking structures please visit https://www.a2dda.org/getting-around/

For information about accessible parking, please check for U-M lots and public parking.

Important U-M contact information

University Commencement: (734) 647-7900
Campus Information Center: (734) 764-4636

Ford School contact information

Ford School events: [email protected]
Jordan Long, Academic Advisor: [email protected]