Undergraduate Student Speaker Competition

Student in blue graduation cap and gown standing at a podium speaking.

One last chance to raise your voice!

Every year, the College of Arts and Sciences selects a student speaker for each of the two undergraduate commencement ceremonies. This honor includes two extra graduation tickets!

Competition Guidelines

  • Applicants must be eligible to graduate by June 2024 with a major in the UB College of Arts and Sciences.
  • Applicants must have both applied to graduate and registered to walk in their commencement ceremony.  
  • Applicants must submit their speech in writing (see form below).
  • Speeches must be no more than 500 words in length. 
  • Every submission will be evaluated by a committee. From this pool, the committee will select applicants to audition by presenting their speech to the committee. Before the audition, these students will have the opportunity to meet with a consultant provided by the College of Arts and Sciences to practice and perfect their speech. 
  • Speeches must be submitted by Monday, March 25, 2024.

Student Speaker Application

Meet some of our past speakers

Zamira Caldwell

BA in Biological Sciences

Jyla Serfino

 BA in Political Science and Psychology

What should I put in my speech?

The best speeches come from the heart, include memorable details and touch on relatable experiences. Some questions to ask yourself as you begin preparing your speech:

  • What’s my favorite UB experience and why?
  • How have I changed since I came to UB?
  • Who are some of the people who’ve made a positive impact on me and why?  
  • What’s the best advice I’ve received from a professor or classmate?
  • What mistakes have I learned from?
  • How has my time at UB shaped my goals for the future?  
  • What do I hope I’ll always remember?
  • Why am I proud to be a UB grad?
  • What good wishes do I have for the UB Class of 2024? 
Want More Help?

Visit the Center for Excellence in Writing to meet one-on-one with a writing consultant!


With questions about the student speaker competition, please contact:

Anne Mecca
Assistant Director for Admissions and Student Services