Skip to main content

Congratulations to the Class of 2024!


Image: Convocation 2023.


Over 1,000 OCAD University graduands from the Class of 2024 will cross the stage at Roy Thomson Hall on June 14 during Convocation.

This is the largest graduating class in recent OCAD U history, with a total of 1,086 graduands from the fall, winter and spring terms.

Two ceremonies will take place, beginning with morning ceremony at 10:30 a.m. for the Faculty of Design, followed by the afternoon ceremony at 3:30 p.m. for the Faculty of Art, Faculty of Arts and Science and School of Graduate Studies.

 The festivities will begin with a welcome from Amos Key Jr., Mohawk Educator and Faith Keeper, Six Nations of Grand River Territory, and Councillor for the 59th Six Nations Elected Council, who will present gifts to three Indigenous students on stage.


Indigenous students are gifted a stole made by Tammy Beauvais, a Mohawk fashion designer from Kahnawake Mohawk Territory in Quebec. The black stoles are embroidered with the OCAD U and ISC logos. Students are also given graduation gifts at the Indigenous Graduate Reception at Roy Thomson Hall.

Learn more and livestream 2024 Convocation.

Recognizing medal winners

Convocation will recognize the medal winners from GradEx 109, Toronto’s largest free art and design exhibition, which featured more than 800 emerging artists, designers and digital media makers from May 1 to 5.

Among the medal winners from OCAD U’s 18 undergraduate programs are:

  • Environmental Design student Batoll Nassery, who envisioned a new urban innovation hub for Toronto’s Financial District that would educate students and young professionals within a transdisciplinary environment focused on launching start-ups
  • Sculpture and Installation student Caro Simon, whose final work presented an installation of seven anti-monuments that critically reassess the post-industrial built environment and the dehumanized distanced modes of interaction between bodies and utilitarian urban infrastructure
  • Graphic Design student Yiğit Toprak, who designed a series of unconventional graphic design tools such as “The Manicule”, a hand and arm accessory with which a designer can move typography and other graphic design assets around on a screen without having to touch a mouse or a keyboard.
  • Cross-Disciplinary Art: Life Studies student Pixel Heller’s final work, Archiving the Evolution of Culture,was a larger-than-life creation of two seven-foot-tall prints depicting her as the Moko Jumbie, a traditional masquerade character with roots in West Africa. Heller crafted two pairs of stilts – one at three feet and one at five feet – for herself to perform in as part of her work. Heller is a multidisciplinary artist and designer whose creative journey is deeply influenced by her identity as a woman of Afro-Caribbean descent.

Governor General’s Academic Medal Awards

Convocation includes the recognition of two exceptional students who are recipients of the Governor General’s Academic Medals. The silver medal is given annually to an undergraduate student and the gold medal is awarded to a graduate student who have achieved the highest academic standing across all programs in their graduating year.

The undergraduate recipient for 2024 is Stephen Della Casa, who is graduating with a Bachelor of Fine Arts (Honours) in Photography.

A lens-based artist who focuses on social issues, Della Casa also holds a Bachelor of Arts in Law from Carleton University and has had a 35-year career in hospitality. In the early 2000s, he resumed his artistic pursuits and has since authored four books, including a collection of his photographs.

“After retiring from the hospitality business, I looked at photography as a way to deepen my understanding of the arts by applying my life experience paired with OCAD U's long-standing status as providing exceptional foundations for learning about art and visual theory,” says Della Casa.

Della Casa’s recent exhibitions include The Beer Store: Connected Spaces, in which he investigated the social and political dynamics of The Beer Store as a uniquely Ontario experience, and Lost Villages, which considered the sacrifice and loss incurred by 6,000 Canadians who had their homes, land and businesses appropriated for a public works project.

“Winning the Governor General’s Academic Medal Award is an exceptional honour that goes beyond individual achievement,” says Della Casa.

“The award symbolizes a commitment to upholding high standards and positively contributing to our community and field, reflecting upon a legacy of excellence since the Ontario School of Art's inception in 1876,” he continues. “This recognition is a testament to the collective support from mentors, peers and the broader community, illustrating that outstanding accomplishments are achieved not in isolation but through the collaborative efforts of an engaged and supportive network.”

The graduate recipient for 2024 is Dr. Adam Wilton, who is graduating with a Master of Design in Inclusive Design. He received his PhD from in Inclusive Education from the University of British Columbia.

Dr. Wilton is a teacher of students with visual impairments, and orientation and mobility specialist, currently working as the Program Manager of the Provincial Resource Centre for the Visually Impaired (PRCVI) in Vancouver.

His current research and practice focus on shifting the locus of accessibility work in K-12 education so that equitable access to learning materials for blind and partially sighted students is more of a shared project between students, educators, administrators and other stakeholders.

“Winning the Governor General’s Academic Medal Award is an incredible honour,” says Dr. Wilton. It is the culmination of my MDes process, the focus of which was my Major Research Project (MRP). For many years, I've worked with blind and partially sighted learners as they prepare for post-secondary education and through my MRP, I developed a framework for defining and problematizing the accessibility labour required of these students so they can more equitably access course materials. This medal represents, in large part, the priority that our learning communities place on inclusive design and on centering the lived experiences of those most impacted.”

Dr. Wilton also received the Graduate Program Award and Medal from OCAD U this year.

Honorary doctorate recipients

At Convocation, OCAD U will award honorary doctorates to five remarkable individuals who have been leaders of change, having made a direct impact on arts and culture in Canada and worldwide.

This year’s honorands are Janet Cardiff, George Bures Miller, Siamak Hariri, Michael Massie, CM, RCA and Andrew Pringle, CM.

Learn more about the recipients.