Baccalaureate, Commencement | Earlham College
COVID-19 news, plans and updates | READ MORE
Skip to Content


Most seniors and their parents are clear about the meaning of Commencement, the occasion which celebrates graduates' academic achievement by the awarding of diplomas. Baccalaureate is less familiar as many students did not have such an event at their high school.

At Baccalaureate, Earlham celebrates the importance of the whole journey that students and faculty have undertaken together. It is an occasion to reflect on the joys and struggles of the past four years, and to celebrate the growth of students and of their mentors.

Reflecting the Quaker nature of the College, Baccalaureate at Earlham incorporates elements similar to those found in programmed Friends Meetings for Worship — typically opening and closing prayers, reading(s), hymn(s) which everyone is invited to sing, a prepared message by a speaker from the faculty, time(s) for silent worship and reflection and song(s) by the Baccalaureate Choir (made up of seniors, faculty, staff, alumni and community members). Baccalaureate also includes aspects of academic ceremony such as the processional and recessional (seniors and faculty walking in together at the beginning and out at the conclusion).

The College strives to make it an occasion of worship and centering for all who are present. Many seniors, faculty and staff find Baccalaureate to be a significant event as they seek closure for their time together in these four years at Earlham.

Baccalaureate Addresses

Print Friendly and PDF

Earlham College, an independent, residential college, aspires to provide the highest-quality undergraduate education in the liberal arts and sciences, shaped by the distinctive perspectives of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers).

Earlham College
801 National Road West
Richmond, Indiana
1-765-983-1200 — Main Switchboard
1-800-EARLHAM (327-5426) — Admission


Earlham admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin, age, gender and sexual orientation to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin, age, gender and sexual orientation in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.