May 1, 2009

More than 600 students to graduate at Catholic colleges in archdiocese

Criterion staff report

Students, families and educators will join in the celebration as the three Catholic colleges in the archdiocese hold their graduation ceremonies in May.

Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College

An advocate of American Indian and Alaska Native tribes, Marlene EchoHawk will deliver the commencement address at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College on May 2.

The commencement for more than 140 members of the 2009 graduating class will begin at 2 p.m. in the Cecilian Auditorium of the college’s Conservatory of Music.

A 1953 graduate of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, EchoHawk has dedicated her life to helping improve the health care of American Indian and Alaska Native individuals, families, villages, communities and tribes. A member of the Otoe-Missouria Tribe, EchoHawk will receive an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters from her alma mater.

The college will also honor Mary Pat Kelly as the college’s 2009 Distinguished Alumna Award recipient.

A 1967 graduate of the college, Kelly is an author and filmmaker whose work includes the recently published novel Galway Bay.

This will be the 168th commencement ceremony for the college founded by the Sisters of Providence.

Marian College

Marian College will set a record and mark a significant ending when it holds its 72nd annual commencement at 10 a.m. on May 9 at the Allen Whitehill Clowes Amphitheater on campus.

The new record will be established as 422 students are expected to graduate from the college founded by the Sisters of St. Francis of Oldenburg.

The significant ending will be marked as the school celebrates its final commencement under the name Marian College. The college will become Marian University on July 1.

The commencement speaker will be James E. Rogers, chairman of the board, president and chief executive officer of Duke Energy, a North Carolina-based electric power company that is the largest electricity provider in Indiana. Rogers will receive an honorary Doctor of Business Administration degree.

Indiana Pacers’ owners Herb and Mel Simon will each receive an honorary Doctor of Public Service degree at the graduation ceremony. And Marian alumna Anna C. Dean Dillon will receive an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters. A 1949 graduate of Marian, Dillon is a trustee of the college and a community leader.

Saint Meinrad School of Theology

Forty-one students are expected to receive master’s degrees when Saint Meinrad School of Theology holds its commencement at 2 p.m. central time on May 9.

The ceremony will take place in the archabbey’s St. Bede Theater, where graduates will receive degrees that include Master of Divinity, Master of Theological Studies, Master of Arts in Catholic Philosophical Studies and Master of Arts in Catholic Thought and Life.

The commencement address will be given by Bishop George J. Lucas of the Diocese of Springfield, Ill. †

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