Publish Date: 12/15/2012
December 15, 2012
MANSFIELD, PA— Three hundred and thirty students received degrees at Mansfield University’s 148th Commencement on Saturday, December 15 at Decker Gymnasium.
At the beginning of the ceremony, a moment of silence was observed to honor the memory of the victims of Friday’s tragedy in Newtown, CT.
Before presenting the graduates with their diplomas, interim MU President Allan Golden, who will leave office on December 31, told them, “The truth is that you’re taking a big leap into a vast world. Believe me when I say, that in this moment of transition, I know how you feel. I have been at Mansfield University not quite two years, first as interim vice president for finance and administration, now as interim president. Through meetings, receptions, athletic and cultural events, I came to know you the students, and the faculty and staff. And before I knew it, I had fallen in love with Mansfield University.”
“Like you, the class of 2012, I am walking across this stage into a new beginning. Like you, I’m wondering how the time went so fast. And as you, I will go out and seek new opportunities, new challenges, and new successes. Your best days are ahead of you; the best days are ahead for Mansfield University. And hopefully all of us will look back at our time here with fondness, gratitude, and love. Thank you, Mansfield.”
In a day full of emotional moments, Golden presented a posthumous degree to the mother and sister of Katilyn McBride, a MU soccer player who was killed in a car accident last summer. The crowd responded with a standng ovation.
Author William P. Robertson, a 1972 Mansfield graduate, was the speaker. He recounted coming to campus 40 years ago as a shy teenager.
“It’s even harder to fathom that I’m now standing behind this podium, considering that the only low grade I received at Mansfield State College was in speech,” Robertson said with a laugh.
He went on to talk about how Mansfield prepared him for everything he has dealt with in his life.
“I hope that those of you who return 40 years from now to visit, get the same goose bumps as I do walking around campus,” Robertson said. “My time at Mansfield was the heyday of my life, and I was truly blessed to have had the opportunity to go to college here.”
Also during Commencement, Lewis Lee spoke on behalf of the Council of Trustees and introduced Robertson. Jeffrey Howe ’04, first vice-president of the Alumni Association, gave the alumni greeting, President Aaron Miller represented the Student Government Association and President Joseph Maresco represneted the Mansfield University Foundation.
The MU Brass Band, conducted by Nathan Rinnert, and a Student Choral Quartet, directed by Sheryl Monkelien, provided musical accompaniment for the event. Campus Minister Courtney Hull delivered the invocation. Professor Adam Brennan served as grand marshal and Professor Lee Wright was herald.
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