U.S. Senator Brian Schatz ’94 of Hawaii delivered the principal address at Pomona’s 124th Commencement exercises on May 14, 2017, as a total of 372 graduates stepped forward to receive their undergraduate degrees. Other speakers and honorary degree recipients were researcher and educator Sarah C. R. Elgin ’67, P’05; human rights lawyer and activist Gay McDougall; and philanthropists Frederick “Rick” P’95 and Susan Sontag ’64, P’95.
The graduation ceremony was the 14th for outgoing President David Oxtoby, who gave his final charge to a Pomona graduating class, telling the Class of 2017, “I call on you to engage politically, and to use your Pomona education for that purpose. It is not enough simply to complain privately about some action being taken. Organize, protest, vote, run for office, and engage in the political world. While some might think ‘politics’ a dirty word, we have heard from Senator Schatz today that it can also be a high calling and an opportunity to help craft solutions to some of the world’s most pressing problems. It can be difficult, but sometimes you must compromise, and you must work with people with whom you disagree. In doing so, you may not always accomplish exactly what you want, but you just might move forward the causes you care deeply about.”
—Photos By Carlos Puma