Monday, May 4, 2009

Georgia State to host two commencement ceremonies May 9

Georgia State University’s 94th commencement will usher in a new way for how the university confers degrees. Starting this semester, GSU will host two ceremonies.

A Ph.D. commencement and hooding ceremony will be held at 9 a.m. on May 9 in the GSU Sports Arena, followed by the bachelor, master and specialist commencement ceremony at 2 p.m. in the Georgia Dome.

“We felt it was appropriate to recognize doctoral students with a smaller, more intimate hooding ceremony in the morning,” GSU President Mark Becker said. “Both occasions will be times of great celebration honoring the hard work that went into realizing such an important goal.”

Georgia State will confer 94 doctoral degrees and 2,242 bachelor, master and specialist degrees, for a total of 3,037 expected graduates this spring.

The keynote speaker for the afternoon ceremony will be Dr. Louis W. Sullivan, the founding dean and first president of Morehouse School of Medicine. With the exception of his tenure as secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services from 1989 to 1993, Dr. Sullivan was president of Morehouse School of Medicine for more than two decades.

The speaker at the Ph.D. ceremony will be Peter Lindsay, associate professor of political science and philosophy as well as the director of the Center for Teaching and Learning at Georgia State. Lindsay is the author of “Creative Individualism” and numerous academic articles on subjects such as 19th century political economic theory, contemporary property rights, Lincoln on secession and the role of reason in judgments of conscience.

The spring ceremony is also notable because it is Becker’s first as GSU president and Provost Ron Henry’s last commencement before his retirement.

“I'm pleased to have been part of a successful ongoing transition of Georgia State to a major urban research university,” Henry said. “Growth in the quality and size of the student body, plus the growth in quality and depth of faculty scholarship, has been gratifying.”

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