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Commencement

May 18, 2020

The Class of 2020 has officially graduated and while students didn’t cross the stage in typical commencement fashion, the celebration was memorable. In the first virtual commencement for a University of California campus, UC Merced honored its more than 1,500 bachelor’s, master...
Tomanike Banks will receive a bachelor's degree in public health on May 12, then a month later her journey will take her to Sierra Leone with the Peace Corps.
The odds of Tomanik’e Banks graduating from college were slim — only slightly lower than the odds she’d go to college at all. But Banks had one thing going for her that many others don’t. Determination. When Banks crosses...
Graduating students listen to a speaker during commencement.
Commencement is one of the biggest events – if not the biggest – in a student’s academic career. It’s a time-honored tradition that recognizes students’ scholarly achievements and marks the beginning of the next phase of...
Mario Banuelos will complete his doctoral studies in Applied Mathematics at UC Merced and participate in the university’s 13th spring commencement.
When Mario Banuelos was 12, his mother took him into the fields to tie grape vines. The labor was tough and the wages were meager. After just one day on the job, Banuelos knew that his path in life would be different. He worked even harder in school...
Student-athlete and leader Abbie-Leigh Meneses is preparing to graduate in May with a bachelor’s degree in biological sciences with an emphasis human biology and a minor in anthropology.
When prospective student-athletes visit UC Merced, soccer standout Abbie-Leigh Meneses is among the first people they meet. Not long ago, Meneses was a recruit herself, touring the University of California’s 10th and newest campus. She fell in...
The campus is preparing for the largest graduating class of roughly 1,200 candidates who are eligible to participate in the weekend’s ceremonies.
The University of California, Merced, has selected political commentator and public affairs professional Maria Cardona and civic leader and entrepreneur Lenny Mendonca to deliver keynote addresses at its 13th commencement exercises, May 12 and 13....
A woman seated, behind the alumna keynote speaker at fall commencement, smiles.
More than 80 undergraduate and graduate students gathered in downtown Merced on Dec. 16 for UC Merced’s first-ever Fall Commencement. Graduates — along with their family and friends, faculty and a score of staff volunteers —...
Shavone Charles' interest in technology started during a summer internship with Google, where she served as a student ambassador liaison between the technology company and UC Merced students.
It’s been five years since Shavone Charles walked across the stage at commencement. On Saturday (Dec. 16), she will return as UC Merced’s first alumni keynote speaker at Fall Commencement. Charles graduated with a bachelor’s degree...
Marcus Shaw will celebrate his dream of earning a Ph.D. in sociology at the university’s first Fall Commencement ceremony Dec. 16.
As a teenager in Merced, Marcus Shaw lived a life marked by poverty, poor choices and indifference to education. The idea of college — especially at the new UC Merced campus — seemed like an opportunity for someone else. Yet on Dec. 16, Shaw...
Alumna Shavone Charles heads global music and youth culture communications at Instagram.
UC Merced is welcoming back its first alumni keynote speaker, Shavone Charles, to address December 2017 graduates at its first Fall Commencement ceremony on Dec. 16. Charles received her bachelor’s degree from UC Merced in literature in...

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