University College graduated 120 students, including 15 veterans, at this year's Commencement.

by Rachel Voorhees

Finishing college is a proud moment for any student, but for working adults it’s exceptionally meaningful. It’s often the next step toward advancing or changing their careers.

“Every graduating class is unique in that they’ve overcome different challenges to get here,” said Shawn O’Riley, Ed.D., dean of University College. “For some people it’s taken them 10 years to get here.”

The event gives graduates the opportunity to celebrate and be recognized for their achievements among those who’ve helped them along the way. Approximately 100 University College graduates, their families and professors gathered in the Thomas Dixon Lovely Ballroom in the Ruth S. Harley University Center on Thursday, May 8, 2014, for the annual University College Pre-Commencement dinner.

“I’m very excited and relieved to graduate,” said Romy Jean-Pierre, a student in the Bachelor of Science in Business program. “I was able to go to work and school, manage my family life and get just as good of an education as if I was a traditional undergraduate.” Ms. Pierre plans to pursue a master’s degree in accounting following graduation.

Five graduates were awarded the David Newton Award for Academic Achievement for attaining the highest GPA in their program. This year’s awards were presented to Betty Marcoux, Kayla Johnson, Peter Maino, Lydia Neely and Lesley Welsh.

“I’m most proud for my children,” said Ms. Marcoux, who earned her Bachelor of Arts in Social Sciences. “I want to show them why I think school is important.” Ms. Marcoux graduated in January and is now a student in Adelphi’s Master of Social Work program.

This year, 120 students will graduate from University College, 15 of whom are U.S. military veterans.

Adelphi allowed me to get my degree, and it’s an honor to be recognized with my colleagues and family,” said Mr. Welsh, who was among the first cohort to graduate from the Master of Science in Emergency Management program. He is a U.S. Army veteran and currently works as an emergency management analyst at Mount Sinai Hospital in Manhattan.

In addition to the special honors awarded, every graduate walked away from the event with a gift bag of Adelphi memorabilia to commemorate their successful journey.

“It’s celebratory,” said Salvatore Iacone, Ph.D., senior adjunct professor, who received the award for Professional Excellence in Teaching. “They’ve accomplished what they set out to do.”

Commencement is just one of the many big things happening at University College. To read more news, visit our news page.

For further information, please contact:

Todd Wilson
Strategic Communications Director 
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