Babson College Celebrates and Honors the Classes of 2020 and 2021 in Multiple In-person and Digital Ceremonies

WELLESLEY, Mass., May 15, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Today, Babson College, the global leader in entrepreneurship education, celebrated the Class of…

WELLESLEY, Mass., May 15, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Today, Babson College, the global leader in entrepreneurship education, celebrated the Class of 2021 in two digital ceremonies, concluding three weekends of hybrid Babson Commencement celebrations for its 101st and 102nd graduating classes.

Babson College Celebrates and Honors the Classes of 2020 and 2021 in Multiple In-person and Digital Ceremonies

The capstone to a two-week-long celebration, today’s events featured traditional remarks from College leaders as well as Commencement addresses from two visionary leaders using entrepreneurial thinking to transform health care: Jamie Siminoff ’99, the CEO, founder, and chief inventor of Ring and a champion of new cancer therapies; and Dr. Albert Bourla, chairman and CEO of Pfizer, the company behind a world-changing COVID-19 vaccine. Both Dr. Bourla and Siminoff also received Honorary Doctor of Laws degrees.

During the graduate school Commencement address, Dr. Bourla explained the enormity of the COVID-19 vaccine development by Pfizer’s scientists and engineers. «They needed to think far out of the box, and design completely new ways of working,» he said. «By thinking big and by shedding ourselves of the preconceived notions, held by ourselves and others, we were able to make the seemingly impossible possible.»

Dr. Bourla concluded his remarks by challenging the graduates to ask themselves three questions during every step of their life journey: «Am I being true to my purpose? Have I aimed high enough? And do I have the right mindset?» Dr. Bourla continued, «because asking the right question is what unlocks the most powerful answers.»

A 1999 Babson College alumnus, Siminoff urged the graduates to follow their instincts in the undergraduate ceremony. «It is hard to listen to your gut over a professional’s advice,» Siminoff said. «Your gut is a whisper, and typically advice is a roar, but it is in that gut that all the intricacies of your journey lie.»

Beginning May 1, Babson began hosting both in-person and digital celebrations to honor the tenacity and adaptability of the Class of 2020 and Class of 2021. Five in-person celebrations featured a procession in caps and gowns, speeches by students and College leadership, the opportunity for graduates to cross the Commencement stage as their names were read aloud, and a special performance by Nashville recording artist, entrepreneur, and 2009 Babson alumnus Jamie Kent, who wrote a song specifically for the graduates.

Additionally, on May 8, two digital ceremonies for the Class of 2020, featured Commencement addresses from Richelieu Dennis Jr. ’91, founder of Sundial Brands and founder and chair of Essence Ventures, and Carla Harris, vice chairman, managing director, and senior client advisor at Morgan Stanley. Both Dennis and Harris also received Honorary Doctor of Laws degrees.

In his Commencement address, Babson College President Stephen Spinelli Jr. MBA’92, PhD spoke about the difficulties of the past year. «Class of 2021, you didn’t choose to be at the center of these momentous events and historically formative times, but they are your call to action,» he said. «The complex problems of the world today—injustice, inequality, poverty, climate change—require entrepreneurial leaders like you to solve them.» Spinelli also reminded the graduates of their own strengths, saying, «You have built your entrepreneurial muscle over these past 16 months, thriving in a world turned upside down. If you can handle that, you can handle anything.»

In a year unlike any other, Babson students, faculty, and staff used their entrepreneurial leadership skillset to adapt swiftly, think critically, and react positively to the most difficult of global challenges. Babson College is proud to graduate the next generation of entrepreneurial leaders and formally present both the Class of 2020 and Class of 2021 to the world.


‘Thank You for Being the Examples of Leadership We So Cherish at Babson’


About Babson College

Babson College is the educator, convener, and thought leader of Entrepreneurship of All Kinds®. The top-ranked college for entrepreneurship education, Babson is a dynamic living and learning laboratory where students, faculty, and staff work together to address the real-world problems of business and society. We prepare the entrepreneurial leaders our world needs most: those with strong functional knowledge and the skills and vision to navigate change, accommodate ambiguity, surmount complexity, and motivate teams in a common purpose to make a difference in the world, and have an impact on organizations of all sizes and types. As we have for nearly a half-century, Babson continues to advance Entrepreneurial Thought & Action® as the most positive force on the planet for generating sustainable economic and social value.

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