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Undergraduate Commencement at stadium, grad ceremonies at Hamer

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Posted on April 19, 2010

Speakers' biographies follow

NOTE: Any student who has not already registered to walk in the Commencement procession MUST notify their dean's office immediately.


For the first time in more than a decade, Cal U will hold its Undergraduate Commencement at Adamson Stadium in Roadman Park.

Graduation ceremonies for students receiving bachelor's and associate degrees will begin promptly at 10 a.m. Saturday, May 8, in the stadium off Route 88, just a mile from the main campus.

Gates will open at 8 a.m. Guests are reminded that early arrivals will find the most convenient parking and the best seats in the stadium's "home side" bleachers.

"We want everyone to have a chance to be there in person to see their loved one receive his or her diploma," said University President Angelo Armenti, Jr. "With an estimated 985 students eligible to graduate, there simply isn't enough room in Hamer Hall to accommodate all our guests.

"Holding undergraduate Commencement at the stadium will allow us to welcome our students' families and friends and will provide space in one venue for all families to see their students walk across the stage and receive a diploma. We all can celebrate this important milestone together."

The undergraduate ceremony will be held outdoors, rain or shine. In case of inclement weather, students and guests will be provided with ponchos. To avoid obstructing the view of others, guests are asked not to open umbrellas in the bleachers.

Parking for undergraduates and their families will be available in the Roadman Park lot, at Vulcan Village and in the Mid-Mon Valley Transit Authority's Park 'n' Ride lot off Route 88. Overflow parking will be available on the main campus, with free shuttles to carry guests to and from the stadium. Carpooling is suggested whenever possible.

Graduate students

Students in the School of Graduate Studies and Research will receive their master's degrees indoors, at 7 p.m. Friday, May 7, in Hamer Hall gymnasium. The ceremony will include the vesting of the academic hood on each of the graduates.

Provost Geraldine Jones '71 will introduce the platform party and present the candidates at the graduate ceremony, with Dr. John Cencich, interim dean of the School of Graduate Studies and Research. Cencich also will give the Explanation of the Academic Hood.

Civil War historian and philanthropist Robert E. Eberly Jr. will address the master's degree candidates.

Parking will be available on the main campus.

Jones also will introduce the platform party at the undergraduate ceremony. She will present the candidates along with Dr. Kevin Koury, acting dean of the College of Education and Human Services; Dr. Michael Hummel, dean of the College of Liberal Arts; and Dr. Leonard A. Colelli, dean of the Eberly College of Science and Technology.

Corporate executive and Internet entrepreneur Fred Gladney '71 will address the students, and award-winning comedian Craig Shoemaker will receive an honorary doctorate.

CUTV will broadcast both ceremonies live on Armstrong Cable (Channel 61 Armstrong-Connellsville) and Atlantic Broadband Communications (Channel 21).

In all, University President Angelo Armenti, Jr. will confer degrees upon nearly 1,200 students, some of them in absentia, during the two ceremonies.

Featured Speakers

- Robert E. Eberly Jr. began a second career as an author and Civil War historian after retiring from the General Counsel's Office of the U.S. Navy.

A re-enactor and living historian with the 101st Pennsylvania Veteran Volunteers, he is the founder and first president of the Low Country Civil War Roundtable, and he helped to start the popular Civil War Roundtable that meets regularly at Cal U.

A board member of the Friends of the National Parks in Gettysburg, Pa., and the Eberly Foundation, he has continued his father's generosity to Cal U, both monetarily and by serving as vice chair of the University's capital campaign, The Campaign to Build Character and Careers.

- Fred Gladney '71 is a successful corporate executive in the information technology sector. After working with IBM and Compaq Computer, now part of Hewlett-Packard, he was part of the leadership team of and senior vice president of Pittsburgh-based Development Dimensions International.

Gladney was founder and CEO of CWG, a software development firm, and he has been at the helm of a number of successful ventures in real estate and Internet marketing. He is currently a business and executive coach.

- Award-winning comedian Craig Shoemaker will receive an honorary doctorate, honoris causa. A former Cal U student, Shoemaker is a writer, stand-up comedian and comic actor who has appeared in more than 100 television shows and feature films. He was named Comedian of the Year at the American Comedy Awards on ABC-TV, and viewers voted his half-hour Comedy Central special one of the network's top 20 stand-up specials of all time.

In 2004, Shoemaker opened a comedy compound and retail outlet inspired by his nonprofit organization,  Currently, he is producing and writing a feature documentary, Live to Laugh.

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