Facebook pixel

Two CBPP Students Speak at Special Reunion Commencement

May 13, 2022
Clare Baldwin

UAA held a special reunion commencement April 30 for UAA grads from the classes of 2020 and 2021 who had missed out on an in-person ceremony due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Commencement speakers included Clare Baldwin, ’20 BA Economics, and Alex Jorgensen, ’20 BA Political Science. They are both currently CBPP graduate students and Clare also works at CBPP as the Faculty Support Specialist.

In 2020, Clare and Alex pre-recorded their speeches for an online commencement ceremony. This year they delivered remarks together, reflecting on their college journey and the people they met along the way.

“Graduating college is a huge milestone in our lives, and we get one day to celebrate all the hard work it took to get there,” Clare said. “It felt rewarding and well overdue to deliver our speech to our peers, families, and UAA community. We got to speak directly to our friends and families and share the experience together.”

“You dream about walking across that stage for years, and nothing compares to the feeling of accomplishment as receiving that diploma,” she said. “For the reunion, we finally got to wear our regalia, complete with all the honor cords we had earned over the years through our academic accomplishments and campus involvement.”


The speeches Clare and Alex delivered in 2020 focused on representing UAA in the community and on perseverance. This year they had some related insights for graduates: “As you reflect on your own path to graduation, remember that our classes represent the best our state has to offer. Graduating from college is always something to be celebrated, but even more so for us as we have persevered through some of the toughest years in the history of our university. We represent the strength of our institution and the transformative impact education can have.”

This won’t be the last time Clare and Alex share the spotlight together. They are engaged to be married in 2023 and will always hold UAA in a special regard for bringing them together!

Photos by: UAA/James Evans