Student speaker Ily Logeais summed it up this way: “The best thing we can do is go forward in relentless pursuit of our passions, as that is what the world really needs; people who are coming alive amongst the debris. We must believe now more than ever in our capacity for growth as humans, and above all else, that it is only when we choose to share in all this complexity and come together in navigating these changes, that we can finally begin to heal.”
Delivered during UC Santa Barbara’s final commencement ceremony of 2022, hers were the words that sent the last of the university’s 6,585 newest alumni out into the world. It was an inspirational and moving conclusion to a week full of such moments, as the campus hosted in-person graduation events for the first time since 2019.
The giddy grads lined up under Storke Tower, then making their march onto Commencement Green. The proud families and friends in the crowd, all waves, smiles and happy cries. The swell of supportive staff and faculty who helped ensure it all ran smoothly. It was all Commencement, all the time, all weekend.
And it was all good. After two years of decidedly strange times, some fond, familiar feelings returned, and they were palpable in every corner of campus: excitement, optimism, pride.
As Chancellor Henry Yang told a cheering and cheerful Class of 2022: “Today and for the rest of your life you will always be proud to say that you are a graduate of UC Santa Barbara.”