Phillip Rodriquez poses with Florida Southern College president Dr. Anne B. Kerr after receiving his degree in History.
Dec 20, 2022
Florida Southern College celebrated Winter Commencement on Saturday, Dec. 17, with a ceremony that honored both undergraduate and graduate students. In all, 197 students earned their degrees, including 116 undergraduates, and 82 master’s or doctoral students.
The combined ceremony took place at 11 a.m. in Branscomb Auditorium. To watch a replay of the commencement exercises, please click here.
The graduation ceremony began with the invocation from Rev. Timothy Wright ’94, the Riley P. and Claire M. Short Chaplain, and the national anthem, performed by graduating senior Aaron Santos ‘22.
Speaking on behalf of the graduates was Ms. Antionette Warren ‘22, from Gadsden Ala., who earned her Bachelor of Science in Accounting and a Master of Science in Accountancy.
The keynote address for the ceremony came from Mr. David G. Denor, Publisher of Florida Trend, the highly regarded statewide magazine and website read and visited by business executives, government officials and civic leaders.
“Life takes you on a journey,” Denor explained to the graduates, “Embrace it. Learn from it. Don’t shy away from a path that might feel a bit unfamiliar, or takes you away from your comfort zone. There is so much knowledge out there. Grasp onto it and follow where your passion takes you.”
Mr. M. Jeffrey Baker, Partner at the firm of Mesick Cohen Wilson Baker Architects, in Albany, N.Y., received a Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa. He is nationally renowned for his expertise in historic preservation, and is the consulting preservation specialist for Florida Southern College. He has led the restoration efforts on campus since 2007, including work on the Water Dome, the Esplanades, Annie Pfeiffer Chapel, the President’s Office Terrace (Emile Watson Building), and the Planetarium. His most memorable contribution was the design and construction of the Usonian House in 2013. Mr. Baker also designed the France Admissions Center and the Weinstein Computer Sciences Center at FSC.
During the ceremony, Florida Southern presented the President’s Scholar Medal for superb academic achievement, awarded in recognition of a student’s academic record and demonstrating great promise for future success. This prestigious award, which is not named ahead of time, was presented to co-winners, twins Brooke ‘22 and Caitlyn ‘22 Lowery, of Punta Gorda, Fla. Brooke earned her degree in Exercise Science, while Caitlyn double majored in Business Administration and Health Care Administration. Both sisters graduated Summa Cum Laude, and were members of the women’s soccer team and the Health Occupation Students of America.
“I am so proud of this graduating class,” said Provost Dr. Brad Hollingshead. “They have demonstrated tremendous grit and determination, and proven that they are ready to make a positive impact on society. Congratulations Mocs!”
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