In a bittersweet commencement ceremony that highlighted how closely its fate is intertwined with the city around it, Boston University bestowed degrees on nearly 6,700 graduates, including posthumous degrees awarded to Lu Lingzi, the graduate student killed in the Marathon bombings, and Binland Lee, a senior who died in a fire in her off-campus apartment last month.
As clouds moved over Nickerson Field, Robert A. Brown, Boston University’s president, opened the ceremony by acknowledging that “we celebrate a scant four weeks and six days” after the Marathon bombings. He also honored Zhou Danling, Lu’s friend and a fellow BU graduate student seriously hurt in the bombings. Brown added that “we lost a prospective student,” 8-year-old victim Martin Richard.