Undergraduates to Walk on May 18

Undergraduates to Walk on May 18


SUNY Cortland will conduct two undergraduate Commencement ceremonies — one at 9:30 a.m. and the other at 2:30 p.m. — on Saturday, May 18, in the Park Center Alumni Arena.

An estimated 1,204 seniors will receive bachelor’s degrees during Commencement exercises, which will be presided over by SUNY Cortland Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Mark Prus.

Judith E. Rink ’65, an internationally respected authority on physical education and teacher preparation, will address the graduates during both ceremonies. Rink will receive an honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters by the State University of New York during the ceremony. Conferring the degree will be SUNY Board of Trustees members Stephen Hunt ’72 and Ronald Ehrenberg, at the morning and afternoon ceremonies, respectively.

The prelude andprocessional and recessional music will be provided by the Cortland Brass Ensemble.

Provost Prus will deliver the charge to graduates.

During the morning ceremony, David Berger, professor of psychology, will carry the mace, a ceremonial staff used as a symbol of institutional authority at the College’s Commencement and academic convocations. Four multi-colored gonfalons, representing the College, its School of Arts and Sciences, School of Education and School of Professional Studies, will be carried, respectively, by Amy Henderson-Harr, assistant vice president for research and sponsored programs; Kathleen Burke, professor of economics; David Smukler, associate professor and chair of foundations and social advocacy; and Shirley Cahill, lecturer in physical education.

Annali Alexander Fuchs of Freeville, N.Y., and Timothy Alexander Fuchs of Freeville, N.Y., both senior musical theatre majors, will sing the national anthem and the Alma Mater, respectively, for the morning ceremony.

During the afternoon commencement, Marley Sweet Barduhn ’76, assistant provost for teacher education, will carry the mace. Gonfaloniers will be: Craig Little, Distinguished Service Professor and professor of sociology and anthropology; Mechthild Nagel, professor of philosophy and director of the Center for Gender and Intercultural Studies; Charlotte Pass, associate professor of literacy; and K. Michael Kniffin, associate professor of physical education.

Khalia Brown, a senior communication studies major from Brooklyn, N.Y., and Carly Merrill, a senior musical theatre major from Queensbury, N.Y., will sing the national anthem and the Alma Mater, respectively, for the afternoon ceremony.

Provost Prus will welcome the graduates at both ceremonies and will recognize the honor graduates. The 2012-13 Student Government Association (SGA) President LeighMarie Weber, a senior speech and hearing sciences major from Williston Park, N.Y., will deliver remarks. Joining Provost Prus in conferring the degrees will be R. Bruce Mattingly, dean of arts and sciences; John Cottone, dean of professional studies; and Andrea Lachance, dean of education.

A total of 133 students are scheduled to graduate summa cum laude — the highest academic honor — with grade point averages of at least 3.75 on a scale of 4.00.

group of graduates
Graduates enjoy the pomp and ceremony of 2012 Undergraduate Commencement in the Park Center Alumni Arena. 

The largest number of majors set to graduate in each of the three schools are: 184 physical education majors in the School of Professional Studies, 120 childhood education majors in the School of Education, and 84 communication studies majors in the School of Arts and Sciences.

Peter Kanakaris ’70, the SUNY Cortland Alumni Association president, officially will welcome the graduates into the ranks of the College’s alumni residing in all 50 U.S. states and more than 40 countries. In its 145-year history, SUNY Cortland has graduated more than 69,000 alumni.

The Undergraduate Commencement Committee is co-chaired by Barduhn; Virginia B. Levine, executive assistant to the president; and Lee Scott-Mack M ’01, associate director, Registrar’s Office.

Other committee members include: Sila Argyle, supervising janitor of Park Center; Seth Asumah, professor of political science; Laurie Barton, assistant to the president; Mary Kate Boland, assistant director of leadership and community development, campus activities; senior Khalia Brown, student representative; Terence Cahill, college store director; Mark DePaull, university police assistant chief; junior Erin Durgin, student representative; Ron Gray, supervising janitor, custodial services; David Horrocks, assistant director of buildings and grounds services; Cheryl Jewell, assistant manager of sports facilities and manger of the Alumni Arena; Ingrid Jordak M.S.Ed. ’93, Emilie Kudela, associate professor of childhood/early childhood education; Eric Malmberg, professor of physical education; William McNamara, director of dining services; Mary E. Murphy ’87, university police lieutenant; Susan Rayl, associate professor of kinesiology; Hailey Ruoff ’98, assistant director of instructional technologies and design services, Memorial Library; Timothy Slack, director of physical plant; Brad Snyder, associate director of classroom media services; Susan Vleck, interim special events coordinator; and junior Rashad Williams, student representative.

Under a tradition inaugurated at the 2004 ceremony by President Erik J. Bitterbaum, undergraduates may honor a special person who has helped them achieve their academic pursuit or goals. The respective name of the honoree will be read along with each graduate.

This year, both undergraduate Commencement ceremonies will be broadcast live on Time Warner Cable access Channel 17 to viewers in the Cortland area. The ceremonies also can be viewed on campus in any classroom equipped with a television, on channels 2 and 17. Additionally, there will be link on the College's Commencement website for the live stream.