The Myers Hall bell will toll at 8:30 a.m., 10 a.m. and again at noon on Saturday to notify the campus that the ceremony will be held in its intended outdoor location at the scheduled time of 1:30 p.m. If the bell does not ring, that will be a signal that the ceremony will be held in the Health, Physical Education and Recreation (HPER) Center, with the doors scheduled to open at noon. Guests should be seated at either venue no later than 1 p.m.
If the ceremony is moved to the HPER Center, doors to Pam Evans Smith Arena will close at 1:15 p.m. to allow for movement of the academic procession. No one will be permitted to enter the arena after the doors have closed. Guests without tickets are welcomed and encouraged to view the ceremony via a video broadcast transmitted to classrooms throughout Hollenbeck Hall.
Special parking and seating have been arranged for physically disabled guests. For Commencement exercises held outdoors, physically disabled guests may enter campus before noon through the drive on North Plum Street. A Wittenberg security officer will be at the driveway entrance to give instructions for parking and seating. In the event the exercises are held indoors, physically disabled guests may be dropped off in front of the HPER Center. Because of limited space in the HPER Center, seating is at a premium, so disabled guests may be seated with only one friend or family member.
Those scheduled for recognition during the Commencement ceremony include 20 "non-traditional" students from the School of Community Education and eight international students. The Class of 2009 is comprised of 245 females and 175 males, with management, English, education, biology and psychology representing the most popular majors.
Twenty-seven states, the District of Columbia and seven countries outside of the United States are represented within the graduating class. Undergraduate degrees to be awarded are Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Music, in addition to two master's degrees.
A total of 124 graduates will earn Latin honors in recognition of their exceptional academic pursuits. Fifty-seven of them will be designated cum laude (3.5-3.69 grade point average), 29 magna cum laude (3.7-3.79) and 38 summa cum laude (3.8-4.0). Among the latter group, two students – Dan Marous from Bexley, Ohio, and Andrea Ipjian from Paradise Valley, Ariz. – achieved a perfect 4.0 grade point average.
The 2009 Commencement speaker is TIME Magazine Editor Richard Stengel, who will receive an honorary doctor of humane letters during the ceremony. Receiving the same honorary degrees during the event are Bishop Mark S. Hanson, presiding bishop of Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), The Rev. Canon Dr. Michael Bourdeaux, founder of the Keston Institute, and David E. Behring, president of the Wheelchair Foundation.
One of the nation's leading journalists, Stengel has consistently brought perspective, depth, passion and energy to the world's largest weekly newsmagazine and all of his professional pursuits. The 16th managing editor in the history of TIME since its founding in 1923 by Henry R. Luce and Briton Hadden, Stengel oversees the award-winning newsmagazine with 25 million readers worldwide, as well as TIME.com, which draws 6 million unique visitors a month. In addition, Stengel, a 1977 magna cum laude graduate of Princeton University and author of several books, including a collaborative work with Nelson Mandela, also manages TIME's other brand extensions, TIME Style & Design and TIME For Kids, and is a frequent television commentator on CNN and MSNBC.
Written By: Ryan Maurer
Photo By: Robert Gantt
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