They were the class that began their college journey in a state of normalcy, then adapted to a pandemic-driven switch to online learning, masks, and quarantines. They have now completed that journey with a return to near-normalcy, and college degrees earned with an extra measure of flexibility and perseverance.

Siena College’s Class of ’22 celebrated their accomplishments with two separate ceremonies, capping off a weekend of celebratory activities.

Charles F. Seifert, Ph.D., who is finishing his term as dean of the School of Business, was the featured speaker at the May 14 graduate ceremony in the UHY Center on campus. Seventy-six master’s degrees in accounting and business administration were awarded.

The following day, the College awarded 748 bachelor’s degrees at the MVP Arena in Albany. The College conferred an honorary doctorate of humane letters on Br. Michael A. Perry, O.F.M., former minister general of the Order of Friars Minor and the 120th successor of St. Francis of Assisi (below, right). Br. Michael also delivered the Commencement address:

"Remember always to love what you do, love why you are doing it, love whom you are doing it for and love who you are becoming while doing it."

A pair of age-related personal stories attracted local attention:

Doremus Bennerman, a basketball standout who left Siena in 1994 to go pro, finally completed his bachelor’s degree requirements at the age of 49. The Times Union shared his personal story.

Elham Malik was Siena’s youngest graduate ever at the age of 17. News10 ABC interviewed her during Commencement weekend.