An Old Tradition for New Graduates

Mace used a Columbia University graduation ceremony

April 16, 2021

One of our graduation traditions involves a person (often a faculty member) carrying a mace down the steps of Low Library, symbolically granting President Lee C. Bollinger the authority to confer degrees. In 1933, the 18th-century mace was given to Columbia University by Judge John Munro Woolsey (LAW’1901, HON’1929) in gratitude for his education at Columbia Law School. Learn much more about the mace here.

Do you want to test your Columbia graduation knowledge? Check out our Commencement quiz!

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