Lavender Graduation

About Lavender Graduation

Lavender Graduation is an annual gathering of faculty, staff, students, and community members to celebrate and send off LGBTQIA+ members of the graduating class. Formerly known as the Rainbow Banquet, this ceremony includes an alumni guest speaker, recognition of graduating students, and presentation of lavender cords.

All graduating undergraduates and graduate students whose lived experience, scholarship, and/or leadership, have contributed to a positive LGBTQ climate on campus are eligible to be Lavender Graduates.

In 2019, the LGBTQ Resource Center re-imagined what was formerly known as the Rainbow Banquet, which had been a tradition since 2003. Lavender Graduations are staples of LGBTQ offices nationwide. They celebrate LGBTQIA+ communities at Syracuse University, SUNY-ESF, and the city of Syracuse, featuring a dinner, a graduating keynote speaker, graduating LGBTQIA+ student recognition, and the presentation of Rainbow Recognition Awards. The awards part of the ceremony were removed in 2019 in order to return focus to the graduating students.

Lavender Graduation 2021

Congratulations to the class of 2020 and 2021 graduates!

For the third consecutive year, we celebrated our queer and trans graduating students (undergraduate and graduate) and their accomplishments through our Lavender Graduation. In light of the ongoing pandemic, our ceremony this year was held virtually on Saturday, May 8, 2021, at 2 pm ET. This year’s celebration was open to both Class of 2020 and Class of 2021 graduates.

Celebration events included a slideshow with information about your degree(s), academic achievements, outstanding service, and plans after graduation and a Lavender Graduation package that included students’ certificate, honor cords, and other gifts from the LGBTQ Resource Center.

If you have any questions or concerns about Lavender Graduation, please email lgbt@syr.edu or call 315.443.0228.