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Pepperdine Caruso School of Law Celebrates Commencement 2024

Caruso Law graduates at Alumni Park 2024

On Friday, May 17, the Pepperdine Caruso School of Law Class of 2024 celebrated their commencement with their families, friends, and classmates. It was a joyous occasion for the 400 graduates who earned their Juris Doctor, Master of Laws, Master of Dispute Resolution, and Master of Legal Studies degrees on a beautiful day in Alumni Park.

Professor Mark Scarberry opened the ceremonies, and associate dean of student life and spiritual development Al Sturgeon delivered the invocation. The Class of 2024 valedictorian, Matteson Landau, led the Pledge of Allegiance, and graduate Cassandra McKenzie sang the National Anthem. 

Caruso Law graduate procession 2024

Graduate Rachel Robson delivered the student addreess. Robson commended the graduates for their commitment, saying, "Class of 2024, we simply did not stumble upon this moment by chance. Whether we here earned a JD or a master's degree, we stand here as graduates, not because we inherently deserve it, but because we earned it through grit, resilience, and unyielding dedication. Let us be grateful for every challenge presented and every lesson learned, personally and professionally."

Pepperdine University president Jim Gash presented the Distinguished Alumnus Award to Gary Hanson (JD '80), who is retiring after serving as the University's senior executive vice president. Hanson gave the graduates three pieces of advice: to know that they belong in the profession; to walk with the God of the Universe at their sides; and to remember to relax, renew, and enjoy the journey.

Caruso Law dean Paul Caron then presented the commencement speaker, the Honorable André Birotte, Jr. (JD '91), district judge of the United States District Court for the Central District of California. Judge Birotte, who spoke to the Class of 2024 during Launch Week of their first year, encouraged the graduates to continue to lean on Pepperdine along their legal journeys. Judge Birotte said he was confident that each and every graduate has something great to contribute to the nation.

Caruso Law commencement speakers and presenters

Following Judge Birotte's address, Dean Caron presented the candidates for their degrees, which were conferred by President Gash.  Dean Caron then led the traditional hooding of the graduates before they crossed the stage to receive their degrees. The ceremony concluded with a benediction delivered by Arnold Barba, associate dean for professional formation. 

Pepperdine Caruso Law congratulates the Class of 2024 and looks forward to seeing the graduates embark on their legal and professional careers.

Caruso Law graduates with diplomas 2024

The complete 2024 Caruso Law commencement ceremony may be viewed on YouTube.