A commencement speech
or commencement address
is a speech given to graduating
students, generally at a university
, although the term is also used for secondary education
institutions. The "commencement" is a ceremony in which degrees or diplomas are conferred upon graduating students. A commencement speech is typically given by a notable figure in the community, during the commencement exercise
. The person giving such a speech is known as a commencement speaker
. Very commonly, colleges or universities will invite politicians, important citizens, or other noted speakers to come and address the graduating class.