Elliott School of International Affairs 
Graduation Celebration
May 13, 2022 at 12:00 pm

Charles E. Smith Center


Congratulations to the Elliott School of International Affairs Class of 2022! Join us on Friday in the Charles E. Smith Center or online to watch the Elliott School graduation ceremony.

University Commencement will be held on the National Mall on Sunday, May 15 at 10:30 am. For the most up-to-date information about GW's university-wide Commencement celebration, visit the GW Commencement website.



Watch the Celebration







 Celebration Program

Cover page of the 2022 Elliott School Graduation Program





Our Speakers


Chairman Gregory Meeks




Keynote Address

Congressman Gregory W. Meeks is the first Black Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, a senior member of the House Financial Services Committee, and is known for being an effective, principled, and common sense leader. Rep. Meeks is a multilateralist with decades of experience in foreign policy; he believes that the United States should build coalitions around our interests and work with other countries to build a stable and prosperous future. 

From public housing to the nation's Capital, Gregory W. Meeks has lived a true American success story. Known for his compassionate and tenacious representation of his constituents, and his coalition-building skills, Meeks proudly serves the constituents of New York's Fifth Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives.


Saad Altami headshot wearing graduation regalia




Student Speaker

Saad Al-Tami is a candidate for a Master of Arts in International Affairs at the Elliott School. Having grown up in the Middle East, Saad developed a deep interest in conflict, conflict resolution, and international security, particularly in his home region. Saad started his professional journey early, in 2008, as the host of a children's educational television show in Kuwait. In 2014, Saad received national recognition when he campaigned and was elected to represent Kuwaiti students in the Kuwaiti parliament on matters related to education. He later pursued higher education and graduated cum laude and Beta Gamma Sigma from the University of Toledo in 2019 with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance. During his time at Elliott, Saad produced an educational video series designed to educate Arabic speakers about International Relations theories and schools of thought.


Gregg Brazinsky




Charge to Graduates

The Harry Harding Teaching Award is given to a member of the Elliott School faculty who has demonstrated sustained excellence in teaching and has made extraordinary contributions to the education of Elliott School students.

Gregg A. Brazinsky is Professor of History and International Affairs and serves as the director of the Asian Studies Program, acting director of the Sigur Center for Asian Studies, and acting codirector of the East Asia National Resource Center. He is the author of two books: Nation Building in South Korea: Koreans, Americans, and the Making of a Democracy and Winning the Third World: Sino-American Rivalry during the Cold War. He has received numerous fellowships to support his research and currently serves as the director of the George Washington Cold War Group.

As director of the Asian Studies Program, Professor Brazinsky has attracted some of the brightest students from around the country and the world who share a commitment to pursuing careers related to Asia. He helped to launch a special mentoring program for Asian Studies MA students and has worked to expand fellowship and professional opportunities for students in the program.




Share Your Day




Mandatory Graduation Surveys

Required for all graduating students, these surveys are designed to help GW and Elliott learn more about the experiences and future plans of our students.




Frequently Asked Questions

If I am finishing my degree in the summer, can I participate in commencement?

Yes, just apply for summer graduation in GWeb by March 25, after you register for summer courses, to ensure you are included in the commencement program.

If I am a Fall 2021 graduate, can I participate in commencement?

Yes, all Fall 2021 graduates are eligible to participate and will be included in communications.

What if I miss the March 15 (or April 1 for summer) application deadlines in GWeb?

You can still apply for graduation by submitting the Late (Paper) Graduation Application (PDF), to your academic advisor, but inclusion in the celebration program and virtual ceremony cannot be guaranteed due to publishing deadlines. 

What if I didn’t receive a confirmation after applying to graduate?

You will not receive an e-mail confirmation that your graduation application has been submitted. You can check DegreeMAP to confirm that the application is on file.

If an application is on file for you, then you will see the words "Sought-Applied to Graduate" or "Applied Late Degree Clearance" in the "Graduation Application" field on your DegreeMAP audit. This is located near the top, in the same section as your name, GWID, Major, etc.

Does the Elliott School provide graduation cords or stoles?

Cords are handled by each organization. If you are involved in a group that you know or think might provide cords or stoles for graduation, we encourage you to contact that organization. If you are an Elliott School Dean's Scholar, you will be contacted about graduation cords for that program. Otherwise, there are no cords associated with Elliott School degree programs and Elliott does not provide cords or stoles for Latin Honors.

Are there two ceremonies for graduation? Which should I attend?

Yes, there is an Elliott School ceremony on May 13 AND a GW-wide commencement ceremony on May 15. You can attend both and the content will be different at each event! At the Elliott School ceremony, each graduating student will be recognized individually and cross the stage.

How do I order regalia?

Order regalia by April 14 in order to have it in time for Commencement weekend. 

Students are required to wear academic dress (cap and gown) to participate in commencement ceremonies. Bachelor's (cap and gown) and master's (cap, gown and hood) regalia information, including purchase costs, can be found on the GW Commencement Academic Dress web page.

How do I register and check in for Commencement Week events?

Please register for Commencement by April 29, 2022. Before registering, make sure you apply to graduate and complete the mandatory graduation survey. To make your check-in process for all Commencement Week events as smooth as possible, please review the GW Commencement Week check-in information prior to your arrival.

If you have questions about the registration or check-in process, refer to the GW Commencement Frequently Asked Questions or contact [email protected].

Are accessibility accommodations available at Commencement Week events?

Commencement Weekend is a very exciting time for graduates and their families. We hope to make the weekend comfortable and accessible to all graduates and guests. Closed captioning and interpreting services will be provided at both the Elliott School Celebration and GW Commencement on the National Mall. Email us at [email protected] with any questions about accommodations for students and guests with restricted mobility.


Please contact [email protected] with any other questions related to the Elliott School graduation celebration.



Hail Alma Mater
To thy spirit guiding,
Knowledge thy closest friend
In its strength abiding,
Pledge we fidelity
Ne'er its place resigning,
Hail thee George Washington!