Thursday, May 3, 2012
LITTLE ROCK When the almost 750 graduates walk the stage to accept their diplomas Saturday at Harding University in Searcy, the event will mark a couple of firsts for the school.
Because of the large number of graduates, the school will hold two commencement ceremonies. It is the first time the school will hold more than one commencement ceremony in its almost 88 years of existence. Both ceremonies will be held in Benson Auditorium.
A ceremony will be held at 9 a.m. for the students in the col
leges of arts and humanities, Bible
and ministry, business administra
tion and education. Michael Clax
ton, associate professor of English
at the university, will be the keynote
speaker for the morning session. Be
sides teaching, Claxton is involvedin several campus activities, including writing a weekly column for the school’s newspaper and serving as half of the duo “Cliff and Clax” - along with Cliff Ganus III - who make humorous chapel announcements. Claxton is also cosponsor of the English honors society Sigma Tau Delta and the Souvenirs poetry club.
A ceremony will be held at 1 p.m. for students in the colleges of allied health, nursing, pharmacy and sciences. Hewitt W. Matthews will serve as keynote speaker for the afternoon ceremony. Matthews is the dean of the Mercer University College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences in Atlanta.
Matthews’ selection as keynote speaker for the afternoon session will highlight the university’s first class of graduates from its doctoral pharmacy program. The first class was admitted to the four-year program in fall 2008.
Both ceremonies are open to the public.
A baccalaureate service will be held at 7:30 p.m. Friday in Brown Chapel at the Batesville college. The Rev. Gordon Garlington III, pastor of Park Hill Presbyterian Church in North Little Rock, will be the speaker. The traditional Scots Walk, in which the graduates follow the Lyon College Pipe Band to Bryan Lake on campus, will be held after the service. The traditional torch-lighting ceremony will be held at the lake.
Commencement ceremonies will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday in Couch Garden. Speakers will include Lyon President Donald Weatherman; Jacob Didion, president of the Student Government Association; and Madeline Boyd and Maci Powers, co-presidents of the senior class.
In case of rain, commencement will be held in Becknell Gymnasium. The ceremonies are open to the public.
UNIVERSITY AT NEWPORT
A potential 235 graduates may walk the stage at Friday’s commencement ceremonies at 7 p.m. in the Center for the Arts, but they will have earned 303 two-year associate degrees or a one-year technical certificate, according to Patricia Calhoun, a spokeswoman for the school.
The ceremony is for both fall and spring graduates. The 147 spring graduates will have earned 188 awards, Calhoun said. The 88 fall graduates earned 115 degrees or certificates, she said.
Faculty Senate President Tressa White and Student Government Association President Zain Chauhan will speak during the ceremony.
WILLIAMS BAPTIST COLLEGE
The Walnut Ridge school will hold baccalaureate and commencement ceremonies for about 100 fall and spring graduates at 10 a.m. Saturday in the Southerland-Mabee Center.
Bill Steeger, recently retired pastor of First Baptist Church in Paragould, will be the speaker. He will also be honored as the college’s 2012 Distinguished Baptist Minister.
The Melbourne-basedschool will hold one commencement ceremony for the fall and spring graduates fromall of its campuses at 7 p.m. May 17 in the John E. Miller education Complex Auditorium. The guest speaker will be Ed Franklin, executive director of the Arkansas Association of Two-Year Colleges. About 400 students are expected to graduate.
The GED commencement ceremony will be held at 7 p.m. May 31 in the auditorium.
According to a press release from the school, there were 185 GED diplomas earned by students in Ozarka’s four counties this school year. Ruby Johnson, division chair for allied health at the college, will be the guest speaker.
Three Rivers, Pages 45 on 05/03/2012