Archival photographs, Commencement

Commencement: Looking Back and Moving Ahead

“You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backward.  You have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.” — Steve Jobs

Another academic year has come to a close.  The campus is quiet this week; we trust that this means our students survived Exams and are now off enjoying summer vacation.  And our members of the class of 2018 are looking forward to Rivier’s 83rd Commencement, which will be held this upcoming Sunday.

To our Graduates: As you focus on the bright future before you, we hope you look back fondly at your days here at Rivier.  We are pleased to have been a part of your journey in life, and grateful for the connection we will always share.

To “connect the dots” between our past and present, we’d like to share a few photos of Rivier’s earliest graduates:

Rivier College, Class of 1939
Rivier College, Class of 1940
Commencement program 1936 part 2
From the cover of Rivier’s Commencement Program in 1936. This is the entrance to the original campus in Hudson, New Hampshire. The Presentation of Mary Academy now occupies the site.
Rivier College, Class of 1943. This photo was taken at Rivier’s original campus in Hudson; the site is now Presentation of Mary Academy.



Commencement, Past and present

Commencement: Celebrating Endings and Beginnings

“All real education is the architecture of the soul.”  — William Bennett

The campus is fairly quiet this week. Final exams for the Spring semester are over; the dorms are mostly vacant.   Those of us who are still coming to work are pleased at the bounty of parking spaces.   And yet, there’s an air of anticipation and elation here on campus, too:  Rivier University’s 82nd Commencement Ceremony is just a few days away.

Here are just a few things that have changed over the years: Rivier has gone from being a College to a University; from women-only to co-educational.  Commencement exercises were once held on the original campus in Hudson; now they are held at a large arena.   Once upon a time, one could only watch the graduation in person; now, it’s live-streamed for many more to virtually “attend.”

Here is one thing that doesn’t change: The excitement about the possibilities ahead for our graduates.

Here is some memorabilia from Rivier’s Commencements past: from the very first Commencement in 1936, to Archbishop Desmond Tutu being honored in 2000:


Commencement 1943
Rivier Commencement Program, 1943. Note that the program is in both French and English here.
Comencement Week Activities 1981
Schedule of activites for graduating seniors, 1981
Commencement 19802 srs faculty
Sisters and Faculty at commencement, c. 1981
Baccalaureate mass 1994
Program from Baccalaureate Mass, 1994
Commencement TUTU
Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Honoree, 2000