Bard College at Simon's Rock: the Early College





The ceremony will be held in-person on Saturday, May 21, 2022, from 11 am – 1 pm under a tent on the Blodgett Lawn. Additional seating will be available in the McConnell Theater. The event will be live-streamed for those unable to attend in person.

Seating will be limited to four guests per graduate* and will be on a first-come basis. All in-person guests must register in advance.

Important COVID Protocols

• Seating under the tent will not be socially distanced and will be mask-friendly.

• Seating indoors in the McConnell Theater will be socially distanced between groups and masks will be required.

• We ask that all of our guests be fully vaccinated (booster optional) before arriving on campus, however we will not be collecting nor checking documentation for the event.

Commencement Speaker Ben Dobson ’00

Ben Dobson is the founder and president of Hudson Carbon, where he facilitates the implementation of regenerative organic food and agro-ecological systems to provide healthy food for people and positive ecological outcomes. Born on an organic farm in Hillsdale, New York, he has 20 years of experience operating organic farms at various scales in many settings.

From 2014 through 2020 Ben planned, implemented and managed the transition of 3,000 acres of conventional farmland in New York’s Hudson Valley to a regenerative organic grain and livestock system. This work resulted in the development of a local and organic grain supply chain that plays a critical role in the local food system in the Hudson Valley and western New England.

In 2018 Ben co-founded Hudson Hemp, demonstrating a regenerative organic model to the hemp industry and an important new crop to farms in his region. He continues his work with Hudson Hemp as a member of the board.

These experiences have informed the development of Hudson Carbon and its ability to use scientific methodologies to quantify and value the ecosystem services provided by regenerative organic farms and ecosystems as a means to bring financial value to these critical ecological assets.

Ben lives in Sheffield, Massachusetts with his wife, Nalise Dobson, and their five children.

Past Commencement Speakers

Calendar of Events

Wednesday, May 11
Senior Thesis Signing Event & Celebration
1 pm – 4 pm, Hall College Center

Wednesday, May 11
Affinity Graduation
6 pm – 7:30 pm, McConnell Theater

Tuesday, May 17
Associate of Arts Degree Themed Dinner
4 pm – 7 pm, Dining Hall

Thursday, May 19
Bachelor of Arts Thesis Dinner & Recognition
6:30 pm – 8:00 pm, Dance Studio

Friday, May 20**
Community Commencement Picnic
11:30 am – 1:30 pm, Blodgett Circle

Saturday, May 21**
53rd Commencement Ceremony
11 am – 1 pm, Tent on Blodgett Lawn
(reception to follow on the lawn)

*Additional seats will be made available on May 1 if space permits.
**Event is open to families and friends. Registration is required.