Rainbow Graduation


Welcome! As we respond to the evolving COVID-19 situation, we are saddened to have to cancel the in-person Rainbow Graduation celebration. However, we are curating a video and online content to celebrate the achievements of you all, and encourage you to sign up to be featured and receive a rainbow stole. We love our seniors and are sorry we are not able to celebrate you all in person; we hope to still honor you and your time here at Northeastern with this digital content!

Rainbow Graduation 2021 (Coming Soon!)

More information regarding 2021’s Rainbow Graduation will be coming soon!

Rainbow Graduation through the years

Images from past graduation ceremonies

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Quick History of Lavender Graduation

Where did it come from?

From HRC:

“Lavender Graduation is an annual ceremony conducted on numerous campuses to honor lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and ally students and to acknowledge their achievements and contributions to the University. The Lavender Graduation Ceremony was created by Dr. Ronni Sanlo, a Jewish Lesbian, who was denied the opportunity to attend the graduations of her biological children because of her sexual orientation. Dr. Sanlo designed the first Lavender Graduation Ceremony in 1995 at the University of Michigan, with three graduates.”

2020 celebrates 25 years of these ceremonies, with more than 200 universities hosting Lavender or Rainbow Graduations.

Why is it important?

“Lavender Graduation is a cultural celebration that recognizes LGBTQ students of all races and ethnicities and acknowledges their achievements and contributions to the university as students who survived the college experience. Through such recognition LGBTQ students may leave the university with a positive last experience of the institution thereby encouraging them to become involved mentors for current students as well as financially contributing alumni.

Lavender Graduation is an event to which LGBTQ students look forward, where they not only share their hopes and dreams with one another, but where they are officially recognized by the institution for their leadership and their successes and achievements.”

Why Lavendar?

“Lavender is important to LGBTQ history.  It is a combination of the pink triangle that gay men were forced to wear in concentration camps and the black triangle designating lesbians as political prisoners in Nazi Germany.  The LGBTQ civil rights movement took these symbols of hatred and combined them to make symbols and color of pride and community.”

For more information, click here

Rainbow Graduation Archive

Click below to see photos of past events and programs