Greetings from the Dean - The Briefing, June 2024

June 6, 2024

Dear friends,

We’ve reached the end of another academic year. At the beginning of May, we honored and celebrated our 186 graduates with great pride at the beautiful Hill Auditorium. Our video of the Commencement Ceremony is posted here. If you missed the speeches or could just use some inspiration, watch them again! Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist gave a speech that was so warm, authentic, and smart. And Professor Natasha Pilkauskas, Ramiro Garcia (MPP ‘24), and Zeinab Alhashemi (BA ‘24) did wonderfully as our elected speakers.

Activists, institution-builders, advocates, leaders, and problem-solvers alike: our 2024 graduates are already making an impact on our communities. I’d like to highlight some of their work:

We can’t wait to see what good all of our graduates will do in the future!

We have an eventful summer ahead at the Ford School. This week we welcome our Public Policy and International Affairs (PPIA) Junior Summer Institute and ASPIRE students—28 talented rising juniors and seniors who come to Ann Arbor from across the country to learn about public policy and applied social science research.

I hope to see you at one of our Worldwide Ford School Spirit Day events on July 11 and at our reunion on September 13-14. My best wishes to you for a restful and productive summer.


Signature of Celeste Watkins-Hayes




Celeste Watkins-Hayes

Joan and Sanford Weill Dean of the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy
Director, Center for Racial Justice
Jean E. Fairfax Collegiate Professor of Public Policy
University Diversity and Social Transformation Professor
Professor of Sociology
Research and Community Impact Fellow, Anti-Racism Collaborative