Mason to Graduate 7,392 Students; Convocation Speakers Announced

Posted: May 9, 2011 at 1:03 am, Last Updated: May 17, 2011 at 8:20 am

By Daniel Walsch

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A total of 7,392 students will graduate at George Mason University’s 44th annual Commencement on Saturday, May 21, in the Patriot Center at 10 a.m. Thad Allen,  the retired U.S. Coast Guard admiral who served as the national incident commander in response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill last year, will be the commencement speaker.

Admiral Allen will also receive an honorary doctor in humane letters at the ceremony.

Of the 2011 graduating class, 4,294 are receiving undergraduate degrees, 2,705 are receiving graduate degrees and 224 are receiving doctoral degrees. The university is also awarding 169 law degrees.

This year’s undergraduate programs with the highest number of graduates are: psychology, 315; accounting, 259; communication, 239; information technology, 224; and management, 219.

The two youngest members of the class of 2011 are siblings, age 19. They are Muneeb Akhter and Sohaib Akhter. Both are receiving bachelor’s degrees in electrical engineering. The oldest graduate is Ronald Jeremias, 71, who is receiving a master of arts degree in English.

This year’s student commencement speaker is Quincey Smith, a communication major from Powell, Wyo. Co-captain of Mason’s Forensic Team, Smith helped lead the group to multiple titles, including the World Championship at the International Forensic Association tournament in Budapest where he was named world champion in both persuasion and communication analysis. Smith is graduating with honors.

Convocation Ceremonies and Speakers

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In addition to the university Commencement, each major academic unit within the university hosts a convocation ceremony for its own graduates. Following is a list of the date, time and speaker for each of the convocations. Graduating students are encouraged to attend both Commencement and their academic unit’s convocation.

Wednesday, May 18

  • College of Health and Human Services, 2 p.m., Patriot Center

Speaker: Richard Skolnick, Global and Community Health affiliate faculty member and College of Health and Human Services Advisory Board member

 

Thursday, May 19

  • College of Science, 10 a.m., Patriot Center

Speaker: Veronica Johnson, NBC News4 meteorologist

  • New Century College (CHSS), 11 a.m., Center for the Arts Concert Hall

Speaker: John C. Elder, college professor emeritus of environmental studies, Middlebury College

  • Volgenau School of Engineering, 2:30 p.m., Patriot Center

Speaker: Geoffrey Ling, MD, PhD, colonel, Medical Corps., U.S. Army program manager, Defense Sciences Office, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency

  • College of Humanities and Social Sciences (master’s and doctoral degrees), 7 p.m., Center for the Arts Concert Hall

Speaker: Bob Brink, Virginia House of Delegates, 48th District

Friday, May 20

  • College of Humanities and Social Sciences (bachelor’s degrees), 10 a.m., Patriot Center

Speaker: Melanne Verveer, United States ambassador-at-large for global women’s issues in the U.S. State Department’s Office on Global Women’s Issues

  • School of Recreation, Health and Tourism (College of Education and Human Development), noon, Prince William Campus, Hylton Performing Arts Center

Speaker: Harry L. “Hal” Parrish II, mayor of Manassas, Va.

  • College of Visual and Performing Arts, 2 p.m., Center for the Arts Concert Hall

No speaker; student performances

  • School of Management, 4 p.m., Patriot Center

Speaker: Anne K. Altman, ’82, general manager, Global Public Sector, IBM Corporation; former member of the George Mason University Board of Visitors and 2011 Alumna of the Year

  • School of Public Policy, 7 p.m., Center for the Arts Concert Hall

Speaker: Edward J. Newberry, ’84, deputy managing partner, Patton Boggs; member of the George Mason University Board of Visitors and 2005 Alumnus of the Year

Saturday, May 21

  • University Commencement 2011, 10 a.m., Patriot Center

Speaker: Thad Allen, retired admiral, U.S. Coast Guard

  • Graduate School of Education (College of Education and Human Development), 2 p.m., Patriot Center

Speaker: Gerard Robinson, Virginia secretary of education

  • School of Law, 2 p.m., Center for the Arts Concert Hall

Speaker: Brett Kavanaugh, federal judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit

  • Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, 2 p.m., Johnson Center Dewberry Hall

Speaker: Pamela Aall, provost, United States Institute of Peace Academy for International Conflict Management and Peacebuilding

 

Write to mediarel at gazette@gmu.edu