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 tbd.

Student Speaker Application

The 2024 student speaker application will open in the spring.

Please contact Anne Mecca at cas-commencement@buffalo.edu with any questions.

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