Interested in pursuing a degree in France? Learn more about IAU's degree-granting branch, The American College of the Mediterranean

Bachelor's and Master's Programs

Graduation & Closing Ceremony

Each year, IAU and ACM celebrate the successful completion of the academic year by its graduate students as well as its study abroad students in a closing ceremony and commencement program at the close of the spring term. IAU has been fortunate to welcome the Mayor of Aix, Board of Trustee members, distinguished academics, and other celebrated guests to the IAU and ACM graduations and closing ceremonies.  Read below for information about ceremonies from previous years.


2019 Graduation & Closing Ceremony
May 10, 2019
Le Centre de Congres d'Aix-en-Provence

  ACM graduation ceremony 2019 master's in aix-en-provence 

IAU alumnus and former Ambassador Frances D. Cook spoke at the May 10, 2019 commencement ceremony of the American College of the Mediterranean and the Institute of American Universities in Aix-en-Provence. Fourteen ACM graduates from Masters Programs in Fine Arts, International Relations, and Art History (names below), and almost 200 IAU study abroad students heard Ambassador Cook’s call for political, artistic and social engagement in the world, illustrated with vignettes from her inspiring career as a diplomat and foreign policy advisor. Her first big break, she said, came due to the French-language skills and self-confidence she learned from studying abroad. Arriving as a young officer at the U.S. Embassy, Paris in May, 1968, Ambassador Cook noted, “I arrived at the huge US Embassy in Paris, fluent, and very comfortable working in the unique work environment of France, thanks to the French I learned here.” Her ability to play a role at the center of the seminal events of 1968 – monitoring the student riots, working on the U.S.-Vietnam peace talks, witnessing the rocky Franco-American relations of that period – launched her on a diplomatic career that led to several Ambassadorships. This included being the youngest career diplomat to be named Ambassador, and later on the first woman from any country to serve as Ambassador in the Arab Gulf, in the Sultanate of Oman. She said it was now the graduates' turn to join her in “working for change,” telling them, “The wonderful nation of France is now a part of you, and you’ll draw on its richness and depth, its challenges and its lessons, for the rest of your lives.” 

Thank you, Ambassador Cook, and congratulations to the graduates! 

2019 ACM Graduates: 

  • Tryphena Asamoah, MAIR
  • Larkin Brown, MAIR
  • Chloe Cummings, MAIR
  • Nika Lomidze, MAIR
  • Lisa Mandel, MAIR
  • Kirsti Stangeland, MAIR
  • Isabel Burnette, MAAH
  • Jenny Cawood, MAAH
  • Benjamin Garza, MAAH
  • Patrick Beeby, MFA
  • Sophie Browning, MFA
  • Bill Hindle, MFA
  • Mary Leone, MFA
  • Hilary Stein, MFA

To read the full text of Ambassador Cook's commencement address, please follow this link.  Master's graduates Hilary Stein (MFA), Lisa Mandel (MAIR), and Jenny Cawood (MAAH) each gave speeches to conclude the ceremony. See the full text of their speeches below: 

Interested in seeing more photos? Visit the Flickr album. 

2018 Graduation & Closing Ceremony
May 11, 2018
La Mairie d'Aix-en-Provence

On May 11, 2018, IAU's degree-granting branch, The American College of the Mediterranean, conferred degrees for seven of its students. The students who graduated were:

  • Kathryn Riehle, BA
  • Michele Gerardi, MAFS
  • Kelly Killoran, MAFS
  • Michael Portal, MAFS
  • Luis Arreola, MAIR
  • Joseph Earsom, MAIR
  • Jennifer Neel, MFA
Congratulations, graduates! ACM offers five graduate programs at its Aix-en-Provence, France campus as well as a Bachelor of Arts degree. For more information, please see The 2018 Commencement Speech was given by Mary Frances Pearson, member of the Board of Trustees and first female partner at Ernst & Young.

2017 Graduation & Closing Ceremony
May 12, 2017
La Centre de Congres d'Aix-en-Provence

On May 12, 2017, IAU's degree-granting branch, The American College of the Mediterranean, conferred degrees for twelve master's students. The graduating students are below:

  • Miranda Blas, MFA
  • Mary Hamilton, MFA
  • Ariel Osif, MFA
  • Charley Umbarger, MFA
  • JaMin Yie, MFA
  • Danielle Beiser, MAIR
  • Jena Borel, MAIR
  • Duane Godding, MAIR
  • Makeda Eyasu, MAIR
  • Meghan Devine, MAFS
  • Ewan Hamilton-Short, MAFS
  • Shannon Laws, MAFS
Congratulations to the graduates! Take a look at the Spring 2017 Program of Events and the 2017 Masters Graduation & Ceremonie de Cloture.