Traffic Alert: Wash U's Graduation Is Friday Morning

The commencement exercises begin at 8:30 a.m. Friday, May 17.

Washington University in St. Louis would like to alert Patch readers that traffic around the university will be very heavy the morning of Friday, May 17, due to the university’s annual commencement ceremony.

The ceremony Brookings Quadrangle, which is directly west of Brookings Hall, the university’s main administration building that sits on the hill overlooking Forest Park.

Some 15,000 people are expected to attend the ceremony, which begins at 8:30 a.m. 

Traffic backups should be anticipated on streets near the university, especially Forsyth, Big Bend, Forest Park Parkway and Skinker.

Drivers who normally take those routes to work may want to consider an alternative on Friday morning or take Metro.

The university will award 2,873 degrees to 2,752 students undergraduate, graduate and professional students. The university also will bestow honorary degrees on six individuals. 

Cory Booker. During the ceremony, Booker also will receive an honorary doctor of laws degree.

Washington University’s five other honorary degree recipients and their degrees are: 

  • Marilyn Fox, St. Louis civic leader, philanthropist and community volunteer, doctor of humanities; 
  • Martin L. Mathews, president, CEO and co-founder of Mathews-Dickey Boys’ & Girls’ Club, doctor of humanities; 
  • Juhani Pallasmaa, a Finnish architect, educator and critic and a leading international figure in contemporary architecture, design and artistic culture, doctor of art and architecture; 
  • Peter Rosen (MD ’60), one of the international leaders in the field of emergency medicine and one of the pioneers and founding fathers of the specialty, doctor of science; 
  • Howard Wood (BSBA ’61), co-founder of two of the nation’s most successful telecommunications companies: Charter Communications Inc. and Cequel III LLC, doctor of laws.


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