Commencement

Each May, commencement ceremonies are held on both the Morningside and the Columbia University Medical Center campuses.

Commencement usually falls on the third Wednesday of the month. In the morning, P&S graduates participate in the Columbia University commencement ceremony at Low Plaza on the Morningside campus. The Columbia University President confers degrees and delivers the commencement address to nearly 10,000 Columbia graduates. Each school’s dean presents its candidates to the President. Medical school candidates, presented by the P&S Dean of the Faculties of Health Sciences and Medicine, recite the Hippocratic Oath.

In the afternoon of Commencement day, graduates receiving M.D. or Ph.D. degrees gather at the Armory Track and Field Center for the College of Physicians & Surgeons commencement in which they are each called up to receive their diploma. Awards are bestowed on graduating students and faculty and the graduating class presents a distinguished teacher award. Recent commencement speakers have included Eric Kandel, Atul Gawande, Paul Farmer, Roy Vagelos, Jocelyn Elders, and Jerome Groopman. Students again recite the Hippocratic Oath at the culmination of their education at P&S. A reception with the graduates, their families, friends, and faculty follows the ceremony.