F&M Stories

Class of 2024 Turns Tassels

A pandemic robbed them of high school graduation and enveloped their earliest days of college in uncertainty. You could say the Franklin & Marshall College Class of 2024 knows a thing or two about perseverance. 

Featured speaker Jason Cone ’99 echoed that sentiment at the College’s 237th Commencement ceremony May 11 at the Alumni Sports & Fitness Center.

“Your presence here today is a subversive act. You persevered. You are fighters. You are leaders,” said Cone, chief public policy officer of Robin Hood and former U.S. executive director of Doctors Without Borders

Addressing the 518 graduates in front of him, Cone shared three critical components of leadership: healing, listening and questioning.

“Leadership is taking risk for something you believe in,” he said. 

A sea of colorful cords, stoles and decorated caps reflected the diversity of leaders comprising this year’s graduating class. 

Highlights of the ceremony included remarks from honorary degree recipient Madeline E. Anderson, Class of 2024 president Genesis Familia, Henry S. Williamson Medalist Roxana “Roxy” Calder and F&M President Barbara Altmann

“A great metaphor for your accomplishment is the medical notion of alchemy, which means transforming something of little value into something precious,” Altmann said. 

“Out of distance, you created engagement, friendship and commitment. After sterile conditions of learning and living, you dug into every in-person, real-life experience available… It turns out that you are alchemists, turning alienation into kinship, transforming foundation into possibility, forging leadership from early loss,” she said.

With the traditional passing of the torch, applause filled the auditorium as graduates triumphantly raised diplomas and flipped the tassels adorning their mortarboards.

For downloadable images of the ceremony and events leading up to Commencement, see our full photo gallery.

Class of 2024 By the Numbers:

  • 518 students
  • 95 double majors
  • 190 with minors
  • 85 international students
  • 119 first-generation students
  • 18 Lancaster County students

Lux et Lex Walk Marks Milestone for Class of 2024

On the eve of Commencement, Franklin & Marshall’s graduating class took one final look at campus together during the Lux et Lex Walk.

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"Seeing and hearing others doesn’t mean we have to accept the other side’s arguments or beliefs. But there is power in listening, and leading requires it."

Jason Cone ’99, Commencement speaker
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"A great metaphor for your accomplishment is the medical notion of alchemy, which means transforming something of little value into something precious… It turns out that you are alchemists, turning alienation into kinship, transforming foundation into possibility, forging leadership from early loss."

F&M President Barbara Altmann
Read More »

"We must be ready and excited to not only find the familiar, but more importantly, to challenge it, to make it unfamiliar. To poke at its edges, check its crumbling foundations and open its locked doors. To be engaged with the world this way is to be a lifelong learner."

Roxana “Roxy” Calder ’24, Henry S. Williamson medalist
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"As we step into the world beyond these campus walls, let’s embrace every challenge as an opportunity to showcase the resilience, creativity and tenacity instilled in us by F&M."

Genesis Familia ’24, Class of 2024 president

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