Two young women in graduation caps posing for a selfie at a crowded outdoor ceremony.


Phoebe Gates Graduates From Stanford — and Takes Us Inside The Party (Exclusive)

The budding tech and fashion entrepreneur (and daughter of Bill and Melinda) breaks down her big day.

by Lauren McCarthy

It’s no surprise that Phoebe Gates is something of an overachiever. On June 15th, the 21-year-old daughter of Bill and Melinda Gates graduated from Stanford University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Human Biology, after just three years at the school. Still, the decision to fast-track her degree came with a sentimental meaning behind it: “I knew I had to make it happen if I could, because I wanted to watch my mother deliver this year’s commencement speech as a graduate,” she tells NYLON. “I can’t think of a better ending!”

There is one other key reason, of course; Gates, along with close friend Sophia Kianni, has been hard at work to get their new venture, Phia, off the ground. Currently, the mysterious new project is being teased on Instagram as the “future of fashion.” Gates herself remains just as tight-lipped: “Phia is still under wraps, but my co-founder, Sophia and I are excited to roll it out this year, and are full-steam ahead with it,” she says. “For now you can follow along on our Instagram and TikTok, where we give our BTS.”

Gates did take a work break, naturally, to celebrate her big day with a graduation party that brought together her closest friends and family. “Having a minute to simply relax,” she says of her favorite part of the day. “It’s the end of one chapter, and beginning of another, and it was such a privilege to have this time with our family and friends to celebrate this.” Here, Gates take us inside the celebration.

10:30 a.m.

Kristin Zwiers

Diploma-ready with Mandy, one of my best friends at Stanford, and co-host for the party we held for friends later that evening.

11:25 a.m.

Kristin Zwiers

My mother delivering the 133rd Stanford commencement address—graduating early to watch her deliver this was a dream come true!

12:00 p.m.

Kristin Zwiers

A graduate!! Having Izzy, my best friend from growing up, there to support made everything that much better.

1:00 p.m.

Kristin Zwiers

My boyfriend, Arthur, giving me a lift post-ceremony.

4:00 p.m.

Kristin Zwiers

Quick outfit change for the party Mandy and I hosted to celebrate all of our friends that evening.

4:30 p.m.

Kristin Zwiers

Dad swung by.

5:00 p.m.

Kristin Zwiers

Speech #2 for mom: she’s such an inspiration, and I am so thankful for all of her care and support!

5:15 p.m.

Kristin Zwiers

Dad delivered some laughs...he saved the dance moves. So grateful to have my parents by my side on this day.

6:00 p.m.

Kristin Zwiers

Friends from school; it was so nice to have a minute to just relax and celebrate each other.

6:26 p.m.

Kristin Zwiers

With Arthur, he cleans up nicely.

6:30 p.m.

Kristin Zwiers

Final hug with mom, who reminded us all today that we can channel the passion of our generation into actual change. The next chapter begins now.