GALLERY: Commencement 2015

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On Thursday May 28, 2015, the Harvard Law School Class of 2015 officially became HLS graduates. Here is a look back at their day of celebration. Here is a look at their day of celebration, filled with families, gavels, a former governor—and at least one kazoo.

On the Bench, Commencement 2015 (video)

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Always a popular photo spot, the Harvard Law School sign (and sometimes bench) is even more popular at graduation. This time-lapse video, taken on May 28, condenses six hours of foot-traffic to and from Commencement ceremonies into two minutes.

GALLERY: Harvard Law School Class Day 2015

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Harvard Law School’s 2015 Class Day ceremony featured speeches by Gabrielle Giffords, former U.S. Representative from Arizona, and her husband Mark Kelly, a Navy pilot and NASA astronaut, and Harvard Law School Professor Jon Hanson, winner of the 2015 Albert M. Sacks-Paul A. Freund Award for Teaching Excellence. A number of Harvard Law students from the Class of ’15 received special awards for their outstanding leadership, citizenship, compassion and dedication to their studies and the profession.

Students honored at class day ceremony

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A number of Harvard Law students from the Class of ’15 received special awards this year during the 2015 Class Day ceremony on May 27. The students were recognized for their outstanding leadership, citizenship, compassion and dedication to their studies and the profession.

‘Be courageous,’ Giffords tells HLS grads

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Four years ago, then-Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, D-Arizona, was shot in the head and gravely wounded by a gunman in a mass shooting outside a Tucson supermarket. Most people who suffer such an injury don’t survive, as her husband, Mark Kelly, pointed out. But Giffords fought back. On Wednesday, taking the podium to a standing ovation at Class Day exercises for Harvard Law School, she urged the students to action.

Closing arguments

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This year, more than 750 students will receive degrees from Harvard Law School. Each brought unique experiences to law school and all have tailored their academic careers while at HLS to explore their individual interests. As they prepare to graduate, several members of the Harvard Law School Class of 2015 reflect on the interests they brought to law school and the experiences they will take from their time at Harvard Law.

Chad Baker ’15 wins Kaufman Pro Bono Award

Chad Baker (Kaufman Award)

This year’s Andrew L. Kaufman Pro Bono Service Award was presented to Chad Baker, honored for demonstrating an extraordinary commitment to improving and delivering high quality volunteer legal services to disadvantaged communities. Baker contributed over 2000 pro bono hours working with the Tenant Advocacy Project, the Prison Legal Assistance Project, and the Harvard Legal Aid Bureau.

Closing argument: Victoria White-Mason ’15, taking action against injustice

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In a way, the seeds of Victoria White-Mason’s activism were planted long before she was born. Her grandfather was the first black man to graduate from Duke University, where he faced prejudice and discrimination. Her great-grandfather operated a business in Durham, N.C.’s Hayti district, a thriving African-American community during a time of segregation. Her family history helped raise her awareness of racial injustice and also the strength of black people in the face of adversity.