University of the Fraser Valley

Nearly 5,000 guests celebrate UFV’s graduating class of 2024 

Nearly 5,000 guests celebrate UFV’s graduating class of 2024 

More than 2,800 students graduated this year, with 1,399 crossing the stage at Convocation.

The largest-ever graduating class to be honoured on UFV’s Abbotsford campus was celebrated over six ceremonies between June 11-13, 2024.  

More than 2,800 students graduated this year, with 1,399 crossing the stage at Convocation — cheered on by nearly 5,000 of their closest friends and family. This was the second consecutive Convocation back on UFV’s campus following years of celebrations in and around the neighbouring Abbotsford Centre. 

With decades of graduating classes to look back on as UFV proudly celebrates its 50th anniversary, this year’s group stands out for their perseverance to overcome adversity. From COVID to flooding, fires, and other challenges, UFV President and Vice-Chancellor Dr. Joanne MacLean said the Class of 2024 has proven their determination and resilience. 

WATCH: See the short video recap of the ceremonies here:

“You have refused to be defined by the hardships, choosing instead to rise above them and forge ahead on the path toward your future,” MacLean said in her Convocation speech. “It’s worth remembering that the path to success is rarely a smooth one. It’s marked by twists and turns, ups and downs, and obstacles that sometimes seem insurmountable. Yet it is through facing these hardships that we discover our strength, our courage, and our capacity to overcome.” 

MacLean said it is not the smooth roads but the rough paths that shape our lives. She encouraged the graduates to be relentless in pursuit of achievement and embrace a sense of optimism about what’s possible. 

Student speakers included Kaden Tamis, Grace Kennedy, Cobi Timmermans, Nina Geerts, Josh Gourde, and Kue K’nyawmupoe. 

UFV recognized several students with awards. Marlae Vermeer received the Governor General’s Gold Medal for achieving a grade-point average (GPA) of 4.27 in the MA Social Work program. Amrit Singh (BA Science) received the Governor General’s Silver Medal with a GPA of 4.27, and Pandora Siganakis received the Governor General’s Bronze Medal with a GPA of 4.31 in the Library and Information Technology program. 

Frankie Fowle (BA Fine Arts) received the Lieutenant Governor’s Medal, given to a student in a certificate, diploma, or degree program who has made outstanding contributions in support of inclusion, democracy, or reconciliation, on or off campus. 

In addition to celebrating its graduates, UFV also recognized four exceptional people with Honorary Degrees. Recipients were T’ít’elem Spáth Eddie Gardner, a lifelong champion of Indigenous rights and environmental sustainability; Marion Keys, a passionate advocate for social justice and community collaboration; Michelle Frances Good, a tireless proponent for meaningful decolonization and reconciliation; and Nick Taylor, a professional golfer who strongly believes in giving back to the community he calls home. 

Once again, this year’s ceremonies were held inside the UFV Athletic Centre, which stands on the traditional territory of the Stó:lō people. As the student procession walked into the building for each ceremony, they were accompanied by drummers and singers representing the Seabird Island Community School. Dr. Tracy Ryder Glass, Vice-Provost and Associate Vice-President, Academic, delivered a land acknowledgement prior to each ceremony. Overseeing her first Convocation since being installed as UFV Chancellor in April, Q’um Q’um Xiiem, OC, Dr. Jo-Ann Archibald expressed her admiration for the Class of 2024. 

“These past few years have been a journey filled with learning, growth, newfound passions, and lifelong friendships,” said Archibald, member of the Soowahlie First Nation. “We’ve laughed together, and we’ve developed a greater appreciation for the world around us. Each of us has brought something unique to this shared experience, enriching it in countless ways.” 

Each ceremony ended with a bang from UFV’s confetti cannons before graduates and guests headed outside for photos in the Alumni Plaza, near UFV’s Student Union Building. 

See below for links to photo galleries from each ceremony.

Ceremony 1

Ceremony 2

Ceremony 3

Ceremony 4

Ceremony 5

Ceremony 6