PhD graduate Todd Becker receives his hood from faculty mentor John Cagle, PhD, during the 2024 Graduate School Hooding Ceremony.

The Graduate School celebrated graduating PhD, master’s, and certificate students during two ceremonies held May 15 and 16.

Photo: PhD graduate Todd Becker receives his hood from faculty mentor John Cagle, PhD, of the School of Social Work during the 2024 Graduate School Hooding Ceremony.

“With this ceremony, we welcome you into this community of scholars, with all of its prestige, all of its privileges, and all of its responsibilities. You have earned this moment,” said University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) Vice Provost for Graduate Education and Graduate School Dean Kenneth Wong, PhD, to graduating students during the Graduate School’s Doctoral Hooding Ceremony.  

Wong’s remarks came during two days of celebrations for students from the Graduate School. In addition to the Doctoral Hooding Ceremony on May 16, the school held a Master’s and Certificate Graduation Ceremony on May 15. Both events underscored the interprofessional and interdisciplinary nature of study at the Graduate School, as well as the impressive effort made by all students in their pursuit of advanced education. 

During the May 16 event, Wong noted the importance of support systems throughout each student’s academic journey. That journey toward doctoral education, he stressed, is the pinnacle of personalized education, and it involves years of dedicated effort shaped by faculty and family support as well as the unique experiences of each student. 

“It is clear that our mentors have created an environment where students can excel, and that our graduates are really at the top of their game,” he said. “In a world that is being transformed daily by machine learning and technology, doctoral research — research at this level — is still a very human and very personal endeavor.” 

Each of the 81 graduates who received their PhD degree from the multidisciplinary Graduate School is prepared for a career in research in the health and social sciences, addressing many of the most pressing issues of our time. Over the course of the ceremony, graduates received their ceremonial hood from their faculty mentors, who hail from five of UMB’s six professional schools — dentistry, medicine, nursing, pharmacy, and social work. Each hood, hemmed in a bright or dark blue color signifying their PhD degree, is lined with black and gold to indicate the institution conferring the degree.  

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