Marshall University will honor 1,131 graduates from July and August 2015 and students who are tentatively scheduled to graduate in December at the annual winter commencement at 11 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 12, at the Big Sandy Superstore Arena in downtown Huntington.
Because the winter commencement continues to grow in numbers, the families of the graduates attending this year’s ceremony are urged to arrive early, Registrar Roberta Ferguson said.
“We expect to have a big crowd, just like we had at last year’s ceremony,” Ferguson said. “Winter commencement is a festive event, in part because of the holidays and – of course – because of the milestone accomplishment realized by each graduate when he or she crosses that stage. It is a very proud moment for the graduates and their families – as well it should be.”
Among the students who received or are about to receive degrees are 718 undergraduates, 411 with graduate degrees and two from the School of Medicine. About 500 students have indicated they plan to participate in the ceremony. Each graduate will receive congratulations from Interim President Gary White and be presented with a scroll by his or her academic dean.
Ferguson said 207 students will graduate with honors. Twenty-one will graduate summa cum laude (3.85 to 4.0 GPA), 44 magna cum laude (3.6 to 3.84 GPA), and 130 cum laude (3.3 to 3.59 GPA).
Three students receiving associate degrees will graduate with high honors, and nine associate degree recipients will graduate with honors.
Three students will complete their baccalaureate degrees with perfect 4.0 GPAs, pending final grades for the fall term. They are LeEtta Rae Brillhart of Point Pleasant, West Virginia; Christopher Cameron Hall of Huntington; and Mike Austin Michael of Huntington.
Keynote speaker at the commencement will be Dr. Andrew Nichols, a professor of engineering at MU and winner of the Dr. Charles E. Hedrick Outstanding Faculty Award at Marshall for the 2014-2015 academic year. He also received the Distinguished Artists and Scholars Award for the same year.
Marshall began conducting a winter graduation ceremony in 2008 with a convocation at the Keith-Albee Performing Arts Center. The speaker was Dr. Montserrat Miller, a professor of history. Winter commencement began in 2009 at Cam Henderson Center and the tradition of having an MU professor deliver the keynote address continued.
Previous winter commencement speakers were Dr. Simon Perry, professor of political science, in 2009; Dr. Bonita Lawrence, professor of mathematics, in 2010; Dr. Jamie Warner, professor of political science, in 2011; Dan Hollis, associate professor of journalism and mass communications, in 2012, Dr. Kateryna Schray, an English professor, in 2013; and, Dr. Judith Silver, emeritus professor of mathematics, in 2014.
Here are some facts about this year’s winter commencement:
A downloadable copy of the ceremony will be available free of charge, courtesy of the MU Alumni Association. Visit www.herdalum.com to download your free copy of the commencement ceremony.
Military service recognition
Marshall University will recognize graduates with military service by issuing special red, white and blue cords to be worn at commencement. Military cords must be picked up in the registrar’s office (Old Main 106A) by 5 p.m. Friday, Dec. 11. Cords are to be kept by graduates.
Parking is available in the parking garage on Third Avenue across from the Big Sandy Superstore Arena. Parking in this garage is available on weekends at no charge. Additionally, parking is available in the Pullman Square garages for a minimum fee. All three parking garages are within reasonable walking distance of the arena.
The professional photographer (Grad Images www.gradimages.com) will e-mail proof information to graduates a few days after the ceremony. Purchase of photographs is entirely optional.
Ceremony to be streamed live
Photo: Members of the John Marshall Fife and Drum Corps play at the 2014 Winter Commencement.