2023 Commencement Student Speaker Opportunity


The submission period for commencement speaker applications is closed. Thank you for your interest.

Graduating students, we are excited to offer the opportunity for students earning degrees or certificates in the 2022/2023 academic year to apply to serve as a commencement speaker in this year’s commencement celebrations. This is your chance to reflect on your experiences at OCC and encourage your fellow graduates in their future plans. Addressing your fellow graduates is an honor bestowed upon a select few students. This valuable experience is one that will offer you a chance to influence your fellow graduates in a very positive way. 

We will be selecting one speaker for the 10 a.m. ceremony and one speaker for the 2 p.m. ceremony to be held on Saturday, May 20, at the Oakland University Athletics Center O’rena. 


1. Students graduating the 2022/2023 Academic Year
2. Students with a GPA of 3.5 or above 
3. Students with accounts in good standing


  • Sunday, March 12 (11:59 p.m.)  Application due (Sorry, extensions will not be granted)
  • Week of March 13   Finalists notified and scheduled for an interview
  • Week of March 20    Interviews conducted
  • Week of March 27   Speakers notified
  • Monday, April 24   Final speeches due
  • Friday, May 19   Commencement rehearsal – OU Athletics Center O’rena
  • Saturday, May 20   Commencement at OU Athletics Center O’rena

Speech Requirements - Your speech should:

1. Be 4-6 minutes in length
2. Highlight personal experiences and be relatable to your fellow graduates
3. Incorporate this year’s theme: Finding our Voice

The last three years has prompted all of us to ask hard questions about the future. Questions about who we are and who we want to be. When faced with an unprecedented shift in all we knew to be true, we suddenly had to get used to a new normal—change. This created a need for adaptability on a scale previously unimaginable. While this has been stressful, it’s also created new paths forward, allowed us to find our true voice and accomplish new goals. The door to the future is open as never before. 

Selected speakers will receive guidance and support refining and delivering their speeches from faculty in the Communications/English department.