Commencement 2022

Photo by Brian Cusack

The Cooper Union’s 162nd Commencement took place in the Great Hall on Wednesday, May 25, 2022 at 10:30am. President Laura Sparks welcomed everyone and reminded the Class of 2022 that they are now taking their place among a group of individuals who represent the strength of a Cooper education — individuals who look to pay it forward, whether to the students coming behind them or to their broader communities – and urged them to build on the connections they have made at Cooper.  

Julia Buckley, a senior studying mechanical engineering, took the stage to give the Student Address, telling her peers that "the world needs us to be driven” and “to make the world the image you envision."  

Jelani Cobb, Ph.D., a New Yorker staff writer and the Ira A. Lipman Professor of Journalism at Columbia University’s Journalism School, gave a poignant and at times humorous commencement address, reminding this year’s graduates to be committed to something larger than themselves. “I am reminded here of the late Nobel Laureate Toni Morrison’s dictum that ‘the purpose of freedom is to free someone else.’ You have spent years honing your talents, but if you are the sole beneficiary of those talents you will have missed the point," he said.  

Anthony Titus AR'98, Firelei Báez A'04, and John Manuck ChE'69 received Presidential Citations. Robert Tan AR'81, president of The Cooper Union Alumni Association, closed out the day, welcoming this year's grads to the CUAA. Watch the full ceremony online.

Photos by João Enxuto / The Cooper Union, unless otherwise noted.

  • Founded by inventor, industrialist and philanthropist Peter Cooper in 1859, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art offers education in art, architecture and engineering, as well as courses in the humanities and social sciences.

  • “My feelings, my desires, my hopes, embrace humanity throughout the world,” Peter Cooper proclaimed in a speech in 1853. He looked forward to a time when, “knowledge shall cover the earth as waters cover the great deep.”

  • From its beginnings, Cooper Union was a unique institution, dedicated to founder Peter Cooper's proposition that education is the key not only to personal prosperity but to civic virtue and harmony.

  • Peter Cooper wanted his graduates to acquire the technical mastery and entrepreneurial skills, enrich their intellects and spark their creativity, and develop a sense of social justice that would translate into action.