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Medallion Ceremony

The Honors College recognizes graduating seniors at a special Medallion Ceremony, held at the end of each semester, usually the Friday of graduation week. Each ceremony includes a guest speaker and a student speaker. The Honors College Deans confer each graduate with an Honors College medallion, which can be worn during other graduation events on campus.

Graduating seniors must register for the cermony in advance.

Invitations will be sent in October (December Commencement) and March (May Commencement).

Check the Events section of the website for current information.

Upcoming Dates

Fall 2021: Friday, December 17
Time: 12-2 PM
Location: Festival Highlands Room

Spring 2022: TBD
Time: TBD
Location: TBD


May 2021 Medallion Ceremony Details

The Honors College Medallion Presentation is by invitation only. Students are requested to wear Regalia (except for the mortar board/cap) for the presentation. The presentation program will includes a student speaker, guest speaker and conferring of medallions. Students must register attendance to participate. Students will receive email confirmation of their date/time slot the week of April 12.

All guests attending the ceremony must either have the LiveSafe app and show status when entering the building or print and complete the COVID Health Questionnaire to turn in before entering. We are requiring all guests and graduates to adhere to COVID regulations (social distancing and mask wearing at all times) while in the building. 

View the Honors College May 2021 Medallion Presentation Program.

Student Speaker

Jacob Elson

Jacob Elson is a Senior Quantitative Finance and Economics double major with minors in Mathematics and Honors Interdisciplinary Studies. He has thoroughly enjoyed being an active member of the JMU Honors College over the last four years, primarily through his roles as an HON 100 TA and President of the Madison Honors Leadership Council. During his tenure at JMU, Jacob also has been a member of Beta Gamma Sigma and Delta Tau Delta fraternities. Perhaps one of his fondest memories during his time at JMU was applying his love of basketball to his service in the Harrisonburg community as the coach of a middle school basketball team. Jacob is excited to be joining the team at Light Wave Dental as a Business Development Analyst after graduation. While he is sad to leave the “Greatest Place on Earth,” Jacob is looking forward to the next chapter of his life and carrying on the lessons and values he has taken away from being a proud Duke Dog!

Guest Speaker
Chris Gothard '19

Mr. Chris Gothard '19 is a proud alumnus of James Madison University and the Honors College. During his time as a student at Madison, he earned a B.A. in Political Science and a minor in Honors Interdisciplinary Studies. Chris was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa and the national political science honor society, Pi Sigma Alpha. In addition to completing an Honors thesis entitled "Free Speech on Public College Campuses," Chris maintained an active schedule as an involved student. Two of his favorite activities were leading campus tours as a JMU Student Ambassador and mentoring local high school students through the Valley Ambassador program. 

After graduating from JMU with honors, Chris accepted a position with JMU's Office of Admissions as an Admissions Counselor. He has been and is responsible for the recruitment and evaluation of all applicants from New England (2019-20) and Pennsylvania (present). Chris sits on several university boards and committees, including the Honors College Hillcrest Club Advisors, where he chairs the Marketing and Outreach Committee. He thoroughly enjoys working for his alma mater and is delighted and honored to be addressing the Honors College’s graduating class, the Class of 2021.

December 2021 Medallion Ceremony Details

The Honors College plans to hold an in-person Medallion Ceremony followed by a buffet lunch for graduates and family members. Details will be finalized in late September/early October.

A formal invitation will be sent to gradates in mid-late October 2021.


Tammy Steele
Phone: 540-568-7728

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