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2021 Graduates: The Heroes Among Us

UMass Lowell celebrates the heroes among us who persevered amid the pandemic to shine. Share your "Congratulations" video with UML grads using #UML2021 on social media!

Class of 2021 Changed, but Not Defined by Pandemic

Montage of five graduating students


For some, the COVID-19 pandemic opened their eyes to the inequities of the health care system. Others said it made them appreciate life’s little moments that they used to take for granted. And for others, the pandemic has actually led to new and innovative ways to think about their careers.

For the Class of 2021, COVID-19 will forever be a part of their college experience. 

But it also won’t define the entirety of their time at UMass Lowell.

One week before Commencement, we asked eight graduating seniors to join us for a roundtable discussion on — where else? — Zoom, where we talked about their favorite UML memories, how the pandemic has affected them and what advice they’d give to themselves four years ago, among other topics.  Read what they had to say.

Jamie Smorczewski

Meet Our Student Speaker

Army veteran Jamie Smorczewski, a Double River Hawk who is graduating with a master’s degree in security studies, will share some of what he’s learned about persevering as the university’s 2021 student Commencement speaker. Read his story.

Meet More 2021 Graduates

  • Brendon Aylaian

    Business Management

    Army veteran and business major Brendon Aylaian is working on a solar energy project in Haiti for his Honors College capstone.

  • Daryle LaMonica


    Marine Corps veteran Daryle LaMonica is on the fast track to becoming a doctor through the UMass Medical School Baccalaureate to M.D. Pathway Program.

  • Ben Jeter


    Ben Jeter’s experiences at UMass Lowell, including participating in the professional co-op program and his job as a resident advisor, turned him into a student leader.

  • Rachel Jordan


    Rachel Jordan says that discovering the chair of the Economics Department was a woman helped convince her to come to UMass Lowell.

Meet Andrew Marshall '21, Commencement national anthem singer and contestant on NBC's "The Voice."

News about the Class of 2021