University-wide commencement time, speaker and more

Tim Tebow

Former University of Florida quarterback Tim Tebow — who went on to play professional football and baseball and to be widely recognized for his philanthropy and motivational leadership — will serve as UF’s university-wide commencement speaker this spring in Ben Hill Griffin Stadium.

At UF, Tebow, who graduated in 2009 with a bachelor’s degree in family youth and community sciences, led the football team to two national championships and earned a Heisman Trophy. He is a five-time New York Times best-selling author, speaker and football analyst, and the founder of the Tim Tebow Foundation, whose mission is to bring faith, hope and love to those needing a brighter day in their darkest hour of need. The Christian-based organization serves people in more than 70 countries.

“Tim Tebow is known as much for his hard work, character and commitment to service as he is for his many achievements. And for those reasons, I know the class of 2022 will benefit greatly from his message and perspective,” UF President Kent Fuchs said. “Whether it be in athletics, philanthropy or in his broader life, Tim sets an example for all of us on what it means to be a leader.”

The spring, university-wide commencement ceremony is scheduled for Friday, April 29 at 7 p.m. and is open to the public. UF Board of Trustee member Bill Heavener will introduce Tebow.

Throughout the Spring 2022 commencement weekend, UF will hold college recognition ceremonies and a doctoral ceremony, in addition to the university-wide ceremony, to celebrate and honor the achievements of each individual graduate.

Almost 6,000 graduating students of bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees will be participating in the university-wide commencement ceremony with more than 42,000 guests attending. More than 400 students from 14 colleges will be attending the doctoral commencement ceremony on Thursday, April 28 at the Exactech Arena at the Stephen C. O’Connell Center. These students hail from six continents, representing 89 countries and all 50 states.

The faculty speaker at Thursday’s doctoral commencement is Joslyn Ahlgren, instructional professor and undergraduate coordinator in the Department of Applied Physiology and Kinesiology in the College of Health and Human Performance. Ira C. Robinson, the first Black student to receive a Ph.D. from UF, will also be recognized with an honorary doctoral degree during the ceremony. Computer scientist James Hines will receive an honorary doctoral degree from the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences for his work in software development for understanding animal populations and ecology.

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