Commencement 2021: By the numbers

aerial view of people standing on field to spell out 2021

On Monday, May 17, the University of Pennsylvania honors the Class of 2021 with a hybrid 265th Commencement celebration. This includes a limited in-person ceremony on Franklin Field for undergraduates paired with a live online celebration for graduate and professional students, family, faculty, and staff.

Penn’s live webcast begins at 9 a.m. with celebratory videos submitted by friends and family being aired. The official ceremony kicks off at 10 a.m. As students, family members, and friends celebrate the achievements of the Class of 2021, how many are graduating? How many seniors earned Academic All-Ivy? And how many graduate students were honored with Graduate Leadership Awards? Here are those numbers and more.

    • 5,720

      Approximate number of undergrad and graduate students eligible to graduate on May 17, 2021.

    • 6,222 

      As of May 4, the number of diplomas being awarded for the May 2021 graduation. This includes 2,449 traditional undergraduate degrees. The number of degrees exceeds the number of graduates due to students who are awarded dual degrees or sub-matriculated in multiple programs.

    • 1757

      The year of Penn’s first graduation. Of the 12 students admitted to the Class of 1757, six graduated in 1757 and two more earned their undergraduate degrees at a later date. Penn has issued honorary degrees since its first graduation.

    • 52

      Different types of undergraduate and graduate degrees Penn will confer on May 17. Penn has offered and conferred more than 100 different degrees since 1757.

    • 109

      Number of countries represented by the members of the traditional undergraduate Class of 2021. There are also graduates from all 50 states, based on the fall 2020 census of traditional undergraduate students at Penn.

    • 4

      Number of bagpipers who will play at the limited live Commencement ceremony.

    • 20

      The number of graduating seniors who will sing the “Red & Blue” at the 265th Commencement ceremony. They represent a variety of Penn’s performing arts groups.

    • 16

      2021 Graduate Leadership Awards conferred. The Graduate Leadership Awards honor graduating students for service and lasting contributions to graduate student life at Penn.

    • 24

      Seniors who earned Academic All-Ivy.

    • 215

      Video clips submitted by parents and families for the ceremony.

    • 9

      Goals scored by Adam Goldner in his final game for Penn’s men’s lacrosse team, breaking a single-game scoring record that had stood since 1954.