More than 3,300 proud Toros walked the stage at Commencement 2023 in Dignity Sports Park Tennis Stadium, supported by the joyous cheers of family, friends, and fellow students. Six ceremonies held on May 19-20 honored the commitment and persistence displayed by the Class of 2023, which ended one journey with a flip of the tassel and now begins another.
In his opening remarks, President Thomas A. Parham celebrated the individual achievements of this year’s graduates and reminded them that their journey was only just beginning. “Every year, as we bear witness to the hard work, perseverance, and achievements of our students, we are reminded why education is the great societal equalizer and continues to be the civil rights issue of our day, helping to transform the lives of students and their families,” Parham said.
“I am proud that even as so much of society seems bent on tearing things down, here at CSUDH, we are dedicated to creating: creating community, creating ideas, creating inventions, and creating the equitable and just society we strive toward.”
In his keynote address during the first commencement event, Long Beach Mayor Rex Richardson acknowledged the role CSUDH played in his personal and professional development. “The seeds of leadership, representation, inclusion, and compassion were all planted here. They blossomed, and now manifest throughout my life.”
Richardson, whose wife also attended CSUDH, added: “That’s what makes Cal State Dominguez Hills so special. Its commitment to opportunity, social mobility, and justice are woven into the very fabric of the university.”
California Attorney General Rob Bonta addressed graduates on Saturday afternoon, reminding them not just of the significant challenges they faced on their academic journey, but also the accomplishments they made along the way.
“What each of you had to endure of the last few years was unprecedented — a global pandemic, a virtual world, and constant uncertainty. You also had a front-row seat to some of the greatest threats to our society: hate, xenophobia, and racism,” Bonta said.
“Your generation hasn’t let that hold you back. Instead, you’ve declared Black Lives Matter, marched for our lives, demanded real climate action. You’ve been impatient for change, and rightfully so. I urge you to keep being impatient for change. Keep being intolerant of injustice because you aren’t just the leaders of tomorrow. You’re the leaders of today.”
More photos from all six ceremonies are available. You can find them in this Commencement 2023 archive.