UMBC Spring 2016 Graduate Commencement Ceremony

(MUSIC)>>The Graduate School is led by
the Graduate School marshal, Doctor Robert Deluty, associate
dean of the Graduate School, and Mr. Robert Holder, who
is receiving his Ph.D. in Computer Science today. He is carrying the
Graduate School banner. (MUSIC) (APPLAUSE)>>The procession of graduate
students is led by the students marshal, Doctor Michelle R. Scott, the 2015 to 2018
recipient of the Presidential Teaching Professor award and
associate professor of History and the director of
Graduate Studies. (MUSIC)>>The faculty and staff
procession is led by the faculty marshal, Doctor Constantine
Vaporis, the 2013 Presidential Research Professor and professor
of History and director of Asian Studies. He is joined by staff marshal,
Doctor Susan Martin, the 2015 recipient of the Presidential
Distinguished Staff award for professional staff and associate
director for the Center for Women in Technology. The faculty, staff, and students
marshals are carrying batons that the UMBC Alumni Association
gave to the university in honor of our 40th anniversary in 2006. (MUSIC)>>The platform party is led by
the grand marshal, Doctor Sarah Shin, president of the Faculty
Senate and professor of Education. The grand marshal carries the
University mace, a symbol of presidential authority. Used only on formal academic
occasions, it is carried in the procession immediately
before the president. UMBC’s mace was commissioned
by the Alumni Association for UMBC’s 20th anniversary in 1986. (MUSIC)>>Good morning.>>Good morning.>>The 66th commencement
exercises of the University of Maryland Baltimore County
Graduate School will now be in order. Ladies and gentlemen, please
rise for our national anthem sung by John Fritz, assistant
vice president in the division of Information Technology
here at UMBC – (APPLAUSE)>>- And who has been a part of
the UMBC community for over twenty years. Today, he receives his Ph.D. in Language,
Literacy and Culture. (APPLAUSE)>>Gentleman, please remove your
hats or caps during the anthem.>>(Singing) O say can you see,
by the dawn’s early light. What so proudly we hailed at
the twilight’s last gleaming. Whose broad stripes and bright
stars through the perilous fight, o’er the ramparts we
watched were so gallantly streaming? And the rocket’s red glare, the
bombs bursting in air, gave proof through the night that
our flag was still there. O say does that star-spangled
banner yet wave, o’er the land of the free and the
home of the brave? (APPLAUSE)>>Wow. Thank you John. That was a wonderful rendition
and we are delighted to see your many talents on display today. Thank You. Now I ask that everyone
please be seated.>>(Laughter).>>Ladies and gentlemen, it is my
pleasure to introduce the vice provost and dean of the Graduate
School, Doctor Janet Rutledge. (APPLAUSE)>>Good morning.>>Good morning.>>President Hrabowski and
distinguished guests, today we gather in a time-honored
tradition shared across the world in saluting the attainment
of the standards of advanced graduate study. This ceremonial tradition,
the conferral of master’s and doctoral degrees, is one that
provides a universal currency signifying the highest
standard of achievement in the disciplines, subjects and
professions sponsored by UMBC. This is one of life’s happiest
and most significant milestones for each of today’s graduates. It is a milestone not only for
those earning degrees, but for all of us here today. For the graduates seated in
front of me, it signifies the completion of your master’s
or doctoral degree and the acceptance of new and evermore
challenging horizons. For the faculty and staff, the
event serves as a capstone for all they have shared with you
and brings special joy at seeing your personal success. And for the many friends and
families here today, it is a moment in which we can all share
acknowledging the recognition that you, our soon to be
graduates, so richly deserve. For me, and for many others, it
is a special moment during which we can witness the fruits of
the many labors of our – in our community and take a pride in
the remarkable work that takes place here at UMBC. During the ceremony, those of
you receiving degrees will transition from being
students to being alumni. Whether you go into careers as
educators, scholars, artists, researchers, scientists,
activists, service professionals, or engineers, you
represent the very best of the future. You have embarked on one of the
most important journeys of our lives, that of earning – oops
(laughter) – a degree in your respective field,
profession or discipline. And we are all very,
very proud of you. The degree earned from
UMBC reflects significant achievement, often involving
substantial personal sacrifice and struggle. For the pursuit of new knowledge
and understanding involves growth and change. As we pay tribute to you today,
we recognize too those who have supported you during
your studies at UMBC. We know how much support your
families and friends have provided throughout
the experience. We come together also to
acknowledge the faculty and staff who have encouraged,
mentored, and helped you achieve your very best at UMBC. By honoring you, our graduates,
we pay tribute to their artful craft in leading
you to this day. Please give all of those who
supported you during these important years a
round of applause. (APPLAUSE)>>Sarah Lewis, in her TED Talk
called Embrace The Near Win – that, by the way, has been
viewed more than 2 million times – said we thrive not when we’ve
done in all, but when we have more to achieve. She went on to say, completion
is always the goal, but we hope it is never the end. That nicely summarizes
why we are here today. We salute your achievement
and completion, but more importantly, we celebrate the
commencement of all you have yet to achieve. Congratulations from all of us. Before we move into the program
for today, let me first briefly acknowledge some of the
people on the platform. Joining us are the deans of our
colleges and schools, members of the President’s Council,
presidents of the campus senates, and presidential
award recipients. It is now my pleasure to
introduce Regent James Brady, a member of the University System
of Maryland Board of Regents. Regent Brady will deliver
greetings on behalf of the regents. (APPLAUSE)>>Good Morning.>>Good Morning.>>Needless to say, I am
delighted to join you and extend best wishes from the University
System of Maryland and its Board of Regents on this
tremendous day. It is an honor to share this
occasion with my good friend, President Freeman Hrabowski, who
has done such a remarkable job leading UMBC to new heights of
excellence and national acclaim. Suffice it to say, as UMBC
prepares to celebrate its 50th anniversary, it is by any
measure one of the finest universities in the country. I am also pleased to share this
date with another friend, your keynote speaker Doctor James P. Clements, the president
of Clemson University. As noted in your program, Doctor
Clements has a resume that chronicles his many
great accomplishments. But for today – at least
for today – his greatest accomplishment, without
question, is that he is a proud member of the UMBC family,
holding BS, MS and Ph.D. degrees from this
great university. Welcome home Jim. (APPLAUSE)>>My most important honor today, however, is to be able to congratulate you, the graduate degree candidates, whom this commencement recognizes
and celebrates today. What you have accomplished has
taken hard work, persistence and dedication on your part, as well
as steadfast support from their families, who have shared in
your sacrifice and certainly should share in
your success today. Congratulations to each
and every one of you. That being said, permit me
to leave you with this final thought. Today you graduate from an
institution widely recognized for academic excellence. Tomorrow you must assume the
responsibility of building on your UMBC experience by becoming
effective leaders in your communities, your workplaces
and your professions. There has never been a time
when the need for principled leadership was greater. You have been blessed
with outstanding tools. Now is the time for you
to put them to work. And I am supremely confident
that you will do that in a very big-time way. Once again, congratulations to
each of you in thanking you – and thank you for allowing me to
share this tremendous occasion with you. Have a wonderful day, and have
a lot of fun today as well. (APPLAUSE)>>Thank you, Jim.>>Thank you, Regent Brady, for
your remarks and for all of the support from the
Board of Regents. Now, I have the honor to
introduce Chancellor Robert Caret. Dr. Caret joined the University
System of Maryland as chancellor in 2015. He is very familiar with the
University system and higher education in Maryland, having
served as the president of Towson University from
2003 to 2011 – Dr. Caret. (APPLAUSE)>>Good morning.>>Good morning.>>President Hrabowski, and
Regent Brady, distinguished guests, family, friends, and
most of all graduates, I’m pleased to be here today to
offer congratulations as chancellor of the University
system of Maryland, a system of 12 individual unique campuses. But as I like to say on
occasions like this, and at times like this, today
UMBC is my favorite campus. (APPLAUSE, LAUGHTER)>>Often, when I say that, the
press forgets to put the today in there and then I get into
real trouble with the other 11 presidents. (LAUGHTER)>>Freeman, I echo the words of
Regent Brady and thank you for the tremendous leadership that
you continue to provide to this institution and to the state. Freeman and I go back to the
early ’80s and late ’70s when we were deans together. Thanks to your vision, insight
and boundless energy, the enthusiasm you put into the work
and the hard work of all the faculty and staff that have
worked with you, UMBC continues to reach new heights in
excellence and national acclaim. Having taught here in the
late ’70s, I have seen and experienced this
change personally. And it’s an amazing
evolution of a campus. UMBC, the University System
of Maryland and the state of Maryland are truly fortunate to
be able to call you one of our own. I’m also very pleased to
recognize and thank our commencement speaker and my good
friend Dr. Jim Clements, as you heard, UMBC classes
of ’85, ’91, and ’93. He’s one of the students who
just didn’t want to leave. (LAUGHTER)>>Jim is a personal
friend and a colleague. Almost 30 years ago, I had the
insight to hire Jim as a faculty member at Towson University. That paid off a few years later,
about 10 years later, Jim was chairing the search committee
that brought me back from California to be president
at Towson University. He also served as my provost
and vice president for Academic Affairs before going on to
become the president of West Virginia University, and
then from there to Clemson University, a
remarkable journey. Jim, both UMBC and TU are very,
very proud of all that you’ve accomplished and as a colleague
and friend, I share in that pride. And I’m pleased that I could
be here today to be with you. Of course, as you’ve also heard
today, the primary reason we are here is for all of you, the
graduates, the class of 2016. This is a great day for you. But it’s also a great day for
your families and friends and significant others that have
helped you get here today, and I congratulate them for their
efforts and how it has paid off for all of you. It’s a great day for them also. Whether you are entering the
workforce, continuing your education, entering public
service or maybe even going into politics, your life is about
the change in so many different ways. The excellent education you’ve
received here at UMBC will be invaluable as you traverse your
personal path to your personal future. I want to paraphrase a quote
from Pat Conroy, one of my favorite authors who I had the
pleasure of meeting a couple of times from his book “My
Losing Season.” And I’ll just paraphrase it. Time is a finger snap
and an eye blink. Do not waste a moment of its
swift, breakneck circuit. Live every day to the fullest. Take control of
your own destiny. Remember, life is an adventure. Enjoy your personal adventure. Congratulations. (APPLAUSE)>>Thank you, Dr. Caret. It is a pleasure to have you
join us here today, and we thank you for all the support
that you gave to UMBC. Now, I would like to introduce
Mr. Jonathan Graf, president of the Graduate Student
Association and a Ph.D. candidate in Applied
Mathematics – John. (APPLAUSE)>>Thank you, Dean Rutledge, and
I guess I would remiss also to mention that in my role I get
the pleasure of working with all these wonderful leaders of our
campus, Doctor Hrabowski and Provost Rous. I’ve also had the pleasure of
working with Dr. Caret and Dr. Clements when I was at
Towson for my undergraduate degree. I can also attest to how
wonderful and impressive they are in their ability to lead
and provide direction to great places. So let’s thank them
one more time, why not? (APPLAUSE)>>So let me give you just a
couple of thoughts today. One – let’s think of
it almost like a joke. It’s a question about what the
most important thing for you to get out of graduate school is. Well, do you think? The answer might be yourself. That might be a joke. But today you’re doing
it, so congratulations… (LAUGHTER)>>…Outstanding. The GSA is made up of
many people, not just me. And many of you have been
involved with our organization and are the lifeblood
of our group. I hope that the GSA has provided
you with some opportunities to share your research, to get to
know other graduate students, to support that community. And I hope that we’ve
done a good job. If you were in the GSA and you
want to wave your hand, I’d like to acknowledge all of you
graduating today who are in the audience. So yeah, let’s do that
right now, so go ahead. Wave your hands, yeah. (APPLAUSE)>>So I guess I should also ask,
does anybody here watch “Game Of Thrones?” It’s a TV show, right, on
HBO, in case you didn’t know. I thought that might be a good
thing that people are aware of, and I promise that I won’t give
any spoilers in case you haven’t quite watched the most recent
episode where – is kidding. So in “Game Of Thrones,”
there are many characters. There are many storylines
and many interesting things happening. Each character seems to be
trying to achieve something that may be a little bit different
and going about it in very different ways. Your journey today to graduation
has been, in some sense, like the journey that many of these
“Game Of Thrones” characters face. Luckily for you, most
of you aren’t dying. But those characters who don’t
die into “Game Of Thrones” seem to have a lot of good support,
a lot of good people that work with them or help them
in interesting ways. And I’m sure that in order to
get where you are today you’ve had all of that with your
family, friends, faculty, administrators
and everyone here. So again, to knowledge all of
them – your family, friends, and support – congratulations
to help you. One of the interesting things
that I got out of a recent episode of “Game Of Thrones”
was from one of my favorite characters, Tyrion Lannister. He’s interesting because he
doesn’t have quite the physical abilities to fight that some of
the most notorious members in the Westeros comunity have. But he has a very interesting
mind, and crafty thinking, carefully played moves. And he says very
interesting things. One thing he said was he
drinks and he knows things. That’s what he does. Well I can’t speak to the
former, but today is certainly a celebration of the
latter for all of you. Let’s see what you do with
those things that you know. Congratulations. (APPLAUSE)>>Thank you, John. Those were very inspiring words. And I think now I’m going to
have to do some binge watching. (LAUGHTER)>>We also thank the whole
Graduate Student Association for the collaborative support that
you give to the whole graduate community. Will the GSA executive board
members who are here today please stand so that we can
recognize all that you do? (APPLAUSE)>>And now I am pleased to
introduce UMBC’s Provost and Senior Vice President, Dr.
Philip Rous, who serves as our chief academic officer. Dr. Rous joined UMBC in 1990. He is a professor in our
Department of Physics, and has served as Dean of the College of
Natural and Medical Sciences – Dr. Rous. (APPLAUSE)>>Good morning, everybody.>>Good morning.>>On Behalf of the scholarly
community, we call our UMBC, I’d like to extend my
congratulations to all of our graduates here today. Of course, we had very high
expectations when we welcomed you as a member of
the UMBC community. Those expectations were based
on your promise as scholars. And today we celebrate your
fulfillment of that promise. You will join the tradition of
UMBC alumni who, through their life’s work, continue to advance
our understanding of our own humanity, our democracy, the
natural world that surrounds us, and most importantly, make a
difference in the lives of others. Your diploma represents not just
your academic achievement but the friendships you’ve formed,
the faculty who nurtured you and the family and friends that
supported you and helped you arrive here today. So I hope you will see your
achievement as emerging from within the context
of a community. A community that knows
you and cares about you. My greatest hope is that your
experience as a member of our community will have provided you
with the opportunity to reflect upon the many values
that we share together. Values such as excellence,
commitment, hard work, inclusiveness and respect
for the dignity of others. Perhaps the most important
of these is integrity. So as you look to the future, I
believe that your fulfillment will derive for making the most
of whatever talents have been bestowed upon you. And it lies in extending to the
farthest limits, the resources of your mind and of your heart. And so I wish to leave you with
a personal wish for each and every one of you. May you enjoy a life rich in the
knowledge that each day your work and your relationships
have truly made a difference. Congratulations. (APPLAUSE)>>Thank you, Philip. It is with great pleasure
that I introduce Dr. Freeman Hrabowski, president of UMBC. Serving for over 20 years as
president, Dr. Hrabowski has brought tremendous energy,
vision and leadership to this institution. He has helped connect the
university with individuals, companies, foundations and
agencies that have brought new resources to build and sustain
distinctive programs in undergraduate education and
graduate education and research. Dr. Hrabowski. (APPLAUSE)>>Thank you, Dean, very much. Good morning.>>Good morning.>>Good morning again.>>Good morning.>>It is a great day and I am
delighted to see all of the family members and friends
who’ve come to celebrate this day with our students. This is your day also. We know how much your support
has meant to our graduates. The older I get, the more I
realize that there’s nothing in our lives more important than
our family and our friends. And so graduates, I want
you to appreciate this. I want all of the family members
of the graduates to stand, and graduates give them
a round of applause. All of the family members
of the graduates (laughter). (APPLAUSE)>>I am also going to ask the
wife of our commencement speaker today, Beth has come from South
Carolina, Mrs. Beth Clements, to stand. And secretary of commerce, a
special friend of all of ours Michael Gill to stand. Both of you, would
you please stand? Give them a round of applause. (APPLAUSE)>>Students, our graduates,
this is your day. And I know you appreciate the
significance of saying thank you to people. I would like for the faculty
members and staff members of UMBC to stand, and graduates
give them a round of applause for what they’ve done to be
supportive of you, please. (APPLAUSE)>>These are people who’ve been
mentoring and supporting you and you have formed
lifelong relationships. We have graduates today who
are members of the UMBC staff, who’ve worked really hard. If you are a member of the UMBC
staff and you’re graduating today, in addition to the great
singer John Fritz, would you all please stand? All right, everybody who’s a
staff member, give them a round of applause. We’re very proud of
you, very proud of you. It’s wonderful. John, very nice (laughter). (APPLAUSE)>>And if there are members of
the military or veterans who are graduates today and in the
audience please stand. Veterans and members
of the military. (APPLAUSE)>>Very proud of you, very proud. (APPLAUSE)>>Some of our graduates are
currently teaching or will be beginning to teach
in our schools. I want all of the teachers
of children to stand in the graduating class and in the
audience, if there are any other teachers, stand. (APPLAUSE)>>As you can tell, we place
certain values on certain professions and on
all professions. But we’re giving particular
attention to the teachers because teachers make
such a difference. Whether they are our professors
or the teachers of children, graduates, you are in a position
different from the undergrads – from many of the undergraduates
and many of you have already been working and doing
things for some time. And we recognize you’re leaders
already and you’re taking things to the next level. This is a day that some of you
expected to come, others may have been wondering when would
it ever come, and yet it is here. And when I walked in graduates
– I said to some of you today really is a dream. You are a freshman. You’re going to
wake up in a minute. You’ll just be getting
higher education. Why would I say that? Because to many people – even
to your parents and your family members, when you see people
working so hard to get to a goal, when you reach the goal
it doesn’t even seem like it’s there. It’s almost like a dream. And yet the fact
is this is reality. You have reached this goal. Today is a time for you to savor
this moment, and we are so delighted that you’re here. We’re confident that you will
take things to the next level and I will talk about
that a bit later. But we thank you. Audience, give the graduates
a round of applause for all they’ve done, would you? (APPLAUSE)>>Each of you has a story, and
we have actually identified several of you to be on the 2016
website for inspiring stories. They are simply reflective
of the entire group. If you go to class of
2016, you will find them there. Dr. Rous.>>Now we will confer
our honorary degree. Dr. James Clements, please
rise and step forward. (APPLAUSE)>>Today marks an important
milestone for UMBC. For the first time in our
50-year history, we are conferring an alumnus
with an honorary degree. In his tenure as president of
Clemson University, Dr. James Clements has enhanced the
institution’s reputation and success. Under his leadership, the
university has reached several milestones, including
implementation of the largest campus development initiative
in the university’s history, a record number of student
applications with the strongest academic profile ever and a
record-breaking year in private fundraising. Dr. Clements is a nationally
recognized leader in higher education. He serves on the board of
several influential national higher education associations,
including the American Council on Education and the Association
of Public and Land-grant Universities. He also serves on the Executive
Committee of the Business-Higher Education Forum and the
Council on Competitiveness. As a professor, his work has
been published in the fields of computer science, higher
education and information technology. He has also served as principal
investigator, or co-PI, on more than $15 million
in research grants. Dr. Clements holds three degrees
from UMBC – a BS in Computer Science, a Master’s,
and a Master’s and Ph.D. in Operations Analysis. He also received an MS in
Computer Science from the Johns Hopkins University. We are proud today to honor
Dr. James Clements with an honorary Doctor of Education
degree for his exemplary work and commitment to
higher education. Dr. Clements,
please step forward. (APPLAUSE)>>Now therefore, by virtue of
the authority vested in me by the state of Maryland, and given
to me by the chancellor of the University System of Maryland,
and upon the unanimous vote of the board of regents, I confer
upon you the degree of Doctor of Education honoris causa,
together with all the rights and privileges thereunto pertaining. Congratulations. Please… (APPLAUSE)>>I am – ladies and gentlemen,
let me simply say, as we move to listen to Dr. Clements – this
morning, he mentioned to me where he went to high school. He is a graduate of
Randallstown High School, 1982. Give him a round of
applause for that. We’re very proud of that. We really are. We were especially interested
in Dr. Clements being our commencement speaker, not only
because of his achievements professionally. But he represents
the best of humanity. His strong humanities background
at UMBC really comes through. As you listen to him, you will
be listening to one of the best human beings I know, my friend
and colleague and mentee, Dr. Jim Clements. Yes. (APPLAUSE)>>Thank you, Mr. President,
Chancellor Caret, Regent Brady. And Freeman, thank you for those
very kind and incredible words. It’s such an honor for
me to be with you today. Good morning to all of you here. And to those who are graduating,
congratulations on this major lifetime achievement. It’s so great to be back
home on the campus of UMBC. This is a place that I
absolutely love and a place that totally transformed my life. I spent a lot of time right
here in this building, playing basketball and working
out between my classes. And in those classes, I
got a top-notch education. You see, I’m just a local guy,
who did grow up in Randallstown, MD., but I was fortunate enough
to get three degrees from this great institution, an
institution that I believe is as fine as any in the country. And to those of you graduating
today, you are privileged to be graduating from a
world-class university. You’ve been named as one of the
Top 100 universities around the globe under the age of 50 by
Times Higher Education and as one of the most innovative
universities in the country by U.S. News and World Report. And as you celebrate your 50th
anniversary, I find it amazing to see just how far this
university has come in those 50 years. It’s nothing short
of miraculous. I know that a lot of success is
because you have great students. And I know that much of
that success is due to your incredible faculty and staff. And much of the incredible
success is due to the visionary leadership of Dr.
Freeman Hrabowski. And I owe much of my own
personal success to Freeman. I have known him for a long
time, and I’m proud to say that he has been a personal mentor to
me and a very, very dear friend for many years. In fact, he was the first person
who told me that I would be a university president. And then he followed that by
saying that he would help me achieve that goal. His guidance has been invaluable
to me as a faculty member, as a vice president, as a provost and
as a university president at two wonderful places. So Freeman, thank you for
everything you have done for me and for everything you continue
to do for this great university, the great state of Maryland and
higher education across the country. Time Magazine named Freeman as
one of the most influential leaders in the world. And I don’t believe you will
find a better leader than this man. Can you please give him
a round of applause? (APPLAUSE)>>See, in my life, I’ve been
blessed to have a lot of good people who have helped me. I want to give a shoutout
to a few of those. I do want to thank Dr. Brit
Kirwan, the former chancellor of the University System of
Maryland, for his outstanding leadership and vision. He has also been a great mentor
to me, and he left some very big shoes to fill when he retired. However, I know that my dear
friend Chancellor Bob Caret is already doing a great
job in that role. As Bob mentioned, I had the
pleasure of serving as his vice president and provost. And I learned so much from
him during those years. So thank you, Chancellor,
for your friendship and your incredible leadership over the
University System of Maryland. Would you please help
me thank Dr. Caret? (APPLAUSE)>>I’m also honored to see my
good friend Mike Gill, secretary of commerce for the
state of Maryland. He’s also been a
wonderful mentor to me. Mike, always a
pleasure to see you. And it’s a huge honor to be
recognized along with the president of Harvard, who will
speak at the undergraduate ceremony tomorrow. For me, it’s really humbling to
receive an honorary degree from a university that means so
much to me and my family. And it’s actually difficult to
put into words how much of an impact UMBC has had on my life. My relationship with UMBC
goes back to the early 1980s. I’m the youngest of four
children, and my three older siblings and I were the first
generation in our family to attend college. My grandparents never
graduated from high school. One of my grandfathers was a
coal miner with a fourth-grade education. My other grandfather was a
firefighter with an eighth-grade education. My parents didn’t attend college
because they didn’t have the financial resources to do so. However, they understood. And they taught their children
about the transformational power of education. And as kids, we were taught
that education was the key to a better life, not just for an
individual, but for society as a whole. And we listened. Between the four of us, we
earned 11 college degrees. Seven of those degrees came
from this great university. (APPLAUSE)>>And one of the happiest days
in the lives of my parents was when my older brother and I
graduated side-by-side with our Ph.D.s from UMBC back in 1993. In fact – I’ll take that clap. There was a clap. I’ll take it. (LAUGHTER, APPLAUSE)>>In fact, in 1993, Freeman was
just completing his first year as president. And I recall that he delivered
some very motivational and inspirational remarks at
my graduation ceremony. And I saw the value of my three
degrees from UMBC climb higher and higher ever since
he became president. So this place not only gave my
family a chance to receive a top-notch education. It literally transformed my
entire family and gave us a path to a better life. And being a first-generation
college student wasn’t easy. I couldn’t afford to live on
campus, so I had to commute to school. And I worked 25 to 30 hours a
week to help pay my way when I was going to school full time. But it was worth
every minute of it. And I know that I wouldn’t be
where I am today without my education from UMBC. The reason why I got into higher
education was to give others the same opportunity that I had
been given by getting a formal education. And in my life, I’ve been
blessed with a lot of outstanding teachers and
mentors, including my dear father, who is now 81 years old
– still lives in Randallstown, by the way. When I take stock of the values
that shape my life, however, and how I live my life, I realize
that many of them are based on the lessons taught by my mother
who passed away five years ago. My mother was one of the
greatest ladies I ever knew. And she never had an unkind
word to say about anyone, ever. Today as I stand in the presence
of our graduates and so many supportive and staff members and
family members, I’m reminded of those valuable life lessons. Many of these will sound very
simple and familiar to you. But I believe they
have great worth. And I hope that you find my
mother’s advice as meaningful as I have over the years. First, my mother always
told me to be a good person. And Freeman, I appreciate
that you referenced that. I know my mother
would be pleased. And she would look me in the
eyes, and she would say, you know what I mean. You know what I mean. She didn’t say, be
right all the time. Good people make mistakes,
and good people fail. However, the people strive to do
the right thing the first time and every time. And I also realized that she was
teaching me the value of hard work, honesty, commitment and to
value others – to appreciate our differences and to always work
together as a team to accomplish a common goal. And if you think about it, the
most important advances in society have come from a team
of people working together to accomplish a common goal. Second, she taught me to do what
you say you’re going to do. Keep your word. If you make a promise to
someone, then honor and keep that promise. One of the greatest gifts that
someone can give you is their trust. But it can be easily lost and
very difficult to replace. Third, she taught me to listen. When I was a kid, my mother
would say to me, Jim, God gave you two ears and only
one mouth for a reason. Use them in that proportion. And as I look around this room,
I’m pretty sure I’m not the smartest person in the room. We have a lot of brilliant
people here today. The point is that every person
has been given great talents. And every person can
provide great ideas. Every person can make a
contribution if they are given a chance to do so. So treat everyone as if they
have great value, and listen when others speak. Fourth, she urged me and my
three older siblings to be passionate about education. My mother would be saddened
today to hear that many people question the value of
a college education. Be passionate about education
and be thankful for the opportunity that
you have been given. And never stop learning. President Hrabowski and I are
members of the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society. Their motto is – let the love
of learning rule humanity. And I think that’s a
wonderful motto to live by. Because by learning and applying
what we learned, we can make the world a better place. Thomas Edison made a thousand
attempts at inventing the light bulb. When a reporter asked him, how
did it feel to fail a thousand times? Edison said that the lightbulb
was an invention with a thousand steps. Each step led to
better understanding. And the point is – he never
stopped learning, even when it appeared as if he had failed. And finally, my mother told
me to make a difference. She didn’t say try
to make a difference. She said make a difference. And I learned that little
distinction later on in life. And it instilled in
me a sense of urgency. We must act with courage and
conviction if we are going to make a difference. But making a difference
requires action. Albert Einstein once said that
we should strive not to be a success but rather
to be of value. You can be wealthy, famous and
successful and still not make a difference. Those of you who are graduating
today – you received an excellent, outstanding,
incredible academic reputation at one of the finest
universities in the country. With a degree from UMBC, you can
achieve anything you set your mind to. You can even become the
president of one of the top public universities in the
country if you want to. But most importantly, use your
degree and the knowledge that you have acquired to have a
positive impact on something that is important to you. I challenge you to make sure
that your life matters. And I ask that you please use
the incredible knowledge that you have gained and the research
that you have performed to tackle some of the most
significant challenges facing society today. I know that you can and
will make a difference. And I know that you will make
the world a better place. We are counting on you
to help shape the future. Thank you again for bestowing
upon me the honorary Doctorate of Education. I’m truly grateful
and truly humbled. Congratulations to all of
you and go, Retrievers. (APPLAUSE)>>You got my point about the
human touch, what could be more human than remembering what
one’s parents – what one’s mother has taught
him as a child? I will say that to the people
who are planning to go into the Academy, some of you will become
professors, one of you, may one day want to be
president of Clemson. And if you become the president
of Clemson, let me tell you, that you will have the
opportunity to come with your wife on a private jet to
different places because Clemson has its own jet. Give them a hand for it’s own –
they have their jet down there. (APPLAUSE)>>Others of you may aspire one
day be president of you UMBC and I hope you will. And you will also have a jet. I want you to know that. The faculty don’t know
this but I also have a jet. It is called Southwest. So get (laughter)… (APPLAUSE)>>And I’m very proud of
Southwest and proud of our graduates. I really am, very much so. A little humor always
helps things – all right? Now it is my delight to move us
to the part of the program when we conferred the Ph.D. degrees in the master’s degrees.>>Will the candidates for the
degree of Doctor of Philosophy please rise. (APPLAUSE)>>Dr. Hrabowski.>>Dr. Rutledge.>>Dr. Hrabowski, I have the honor
of presenting the candidates recommended by the faculty of
the University of Maryland Graduate School, Baltimore
for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy, the highest earned a
degree in which any university has the power to confer.>>Upon the recommendation of the
faculty and by the authority of the state of Maryland given to
the Board of Regents and the Chancellor of the University
System of Maryland and by them entrusted to me, I hereby admit
you to the degree of Doctor of Philosophy, which you have
earned during the course of your studies at the University of
Maryland Graduate School, Baltimore. In token where of you shall be
given a diploma with all of the honors, privileges, and
responsibilities thereunto pertaining.>>Thank you, please be seated. Today, all of our graduates… (APPLAUSE)>>Today, all of our graduates
will receive a special congratulatory memento from
the UMBC Alumni Association. Mr. Kenneth Pittman, a member of
Alumni Association Board will greet you and present this to
you as you return to your seats. Now will the candidates of the
degree of Doctor of Philosophy please proceed with their
mentors to the platform to receive their diplomas. Please remain seated until your
row has been escorted to the stage.>>Cristan Alise Smith, being
hooded by her mentor Dr. Leslie Morgan. Dr. Smith explored the way that
patterns of lifetime use of illicit drugs and neighborhood
economic status were associated with physical and mental health
in a sample of mature adults in Baltimore. Dr. Smith is currently
considering various post-doctoral fellowships
and other employment offers. (APPLAUSE)>>Lori Margaret Edmonds being
hooded by her co-mentors Dr. Joann Crandall and
Dr. Nancy Rankie Shelton. Dr. Edmond’s research determined
that high school chemistry students were better engaged by
incorporating students out of school lives and diverse
interests into the class. In July, Dr. Edmonds will begin
a clinical assistant professor position in the School of
Education at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. (APPLAUSE)>>John Lance Fritz being hooded
by his mentor Dr. Zane Berge. Dr. Fritz analyzed UMBC’s
Blackboard online learning platform for insights into
student motivation and faculty course design. Dr. Fritz is UMBC’s assistant
vice president of instructional technology, and will extend
his research in this position. (APPLAUSE)>>Anissa Jane Sorokin who’s
co-mentors are Dr. Christine Mallinson and Dr. Lucille
McCarthy – being hooded by Dr. Mallinson. Dr. Sorokin explored ways of
using music as a pedagogical tool for teaching English
composition to college students. Dr. Sorkin will continue her
involvement in teaching and studying composition as the
director of the writing center here at UMBC. (APPLAUSE)>>Molly Van Appledorn being
hooded by her mentor Dr. Matthew Baker. Dr. Van Appledorn investigated
how bottom-land forests are shaped by flooding by combining
hydrodynamic modeling, geospatial analytics and
ecological field methods. Dr. Appledorn is currently
extending her work as a post-doctoral fellow at the U.S. Geological Survey’s Upper
Midwest Environmental Sciences Center. (APPLAUSE)>>Barbara Jeanine Davis being
hooded by her mentor Dr. John Borrero. Dr. Davis designed a procedure
to determine whether children and adults exhibit a
decision-making bias known as loss aversion and then evaluated
the extent to which loss aversion influenced a
reward-based motivational system for child learners. Dr. Davis is currently a senior
clinical coordinator with Little Leaves Behavior Services. (APPLAUSE)>>Nan Zhou being hooded by
her mentor Dr. Charissa Cheah. Dr. Zhou examined predictors of
young Chinese children’s risk for obesity in the U.S. and China through exploring
parent-child food related interactions and mechanisms,
child characteristics and unique socio-culture context
of immigration. Dr. Zhou is currently an
assistant professor of early childhood education at Capital
Normal University in Beijing, China. (APPLAUSE)>>Michele Anne Crisafulli being
hooded by her mentor Dr. Carlo DiClemente. Dr. Crisafulli dissertation
research examined how alcohol related stigma affects alcohol
problem recognition among individuals with substance
related legal offenses such as impaired driving. Dr. Crisafulli will be a
post-doctoral fellow in primary care mental health integration
at the Baltimore VA Medical Center. (APPLAUSE)>>Angela Amelia Peterson being
hooded by her mentor Dr. Carlo DiClemente. Dr. Peterson examined the
effects of a brief motivational interviewing session on
enhancing smoker’s motivation to quit smoking and interest
in using smoking cessation resources during the residential
substance abuse treatment. Dr. Peterson will continue her
research on tobacco cessation as a post-doctoral fellow at the
Veterans Affairs San Diego Healthcare System and the
University of California, San Diego. (APPLAUSE)>>Emily Claire Foxen-Craft being
hooded by her mentor Dr. Lynnda Dahlquist. Dr. Foxen-Craft demonstrated
how brief submaximal isomeric exercise can improve young
adults pain tolerance and identify possible psychological
factors that mediate this process. Dr. Foxen-Craft will extend
these studies in clinical applications as a post-doctoral
fellow in pediatric pain psychology at the University of
Michigan CS Mott’s Children’s Hospital. (APPLAUSE)>>Saniha H. Makhzoumi being hooded by
her mentor Dr. Steven Pitts. Dr. Makhzoumi focused
on eating disorders. Her dissertation investigated
trajectories of weight gain during treatment for anorexia
as possible markers of relapse. She is currently an intern
at Stanford Hospital. After graduation Dr. Makhzoumi
will begin a post-doctoral fellowship at The Center for
Eating Disorders at Sheppard Pratt Health System. (APPLAUSE)>>Letitia Elizabeth Travaglini
being hooded by her mentor Dr. Steven Pitts. Dr. Travaglini examined the
effectiveness of public service announcements on reducing stigma
toward people living with HIV/AIDS. Upon graduation, Dr. Travaglini
will begin a post-doctoral research fellowship through the
Baltimore VA’s Mental Illness Research Education
and Clinical Center. (APPLAUSE)>>Jamie Falcon being hooded by
his mentor Dr. Scott Farrow. Dr. Falcon analyzed data on
suspected near shore spinal injuries and the coastal
environment for the effects of beach replenishment, education
and underwater obstructions. Dr. Falcon is an adjunct faculty
member at you UMBC, an officer of the Ocean City Beach Patrol
and chairman of the Anne Arundel School Board
Nominating Commission. (APPLAUSE)>>Evan Lewis Perlman being
hooded by his mentor Dr. Robert Carpenter. Dr. Perlman estimated the
effect of opening a casino on employment and wages. He found positive overall
impacts that vary by time, industry and county size. His work will help states and
counties improve economic development strategies. Dr. Perlman is employed as a
senior research analyst in healthcare policy at
Impact International. (APPLAUSE)>>Nichole M. Stewart being hooded by her
mentor Dr. Dennis Coates. Dr. Stewart evaluated the impact
of tax increment financing on low-employment and private
investment in Baltimore city. Dr. Stewart will continue
as a data management and visualization consultant in
the areas of work force and community development. (APPLAUSE)>>Thomas A. Peterson Jr. being hooded by
his mentor Dr. Maricel Kann. Dr. Peterson developed
bioinformatics methodologies for the study of human
cancer gnomes. His research will lead to novel
tools for personalized cancer treatment. Dr. Peterson will extend these
studies as a post-doctoral fellow at Stanford University.>>Jodian Allison Brown being
hooded by her mentor Dr. Ian Thorpe. Dr. Brown used molecular
simulations to understand how multiple inhibitors cooperate
to reduce activity of the polymerase from
Hepatitis C virus. Her studies may help identify
new treatments for viral infections. Dr. Brown will expand her
expertise in molecular modeling as a post-doctoral fellow at the
National Institutes of Health. (APPLAUSE)>>Florika Caling Macazo being
hooded by her mentor Dr. Ryan White. Dr. Macazo developed a new
bio-inspired microscopy to preform chemical mapping at
surfaces with high special resolution and singular – and
single molecule sensitivity. Dr. Macazo is currently
exploring post-doctoral fellowship opportunities. (APPLAUSE)>>Lauren R. Schoukroun-Barnes being hooded
by her mentor Dr. Ryan White. Dr. Schoukroun-Barnes developed
a quantitative framework for the design of electrochemical
sensors to develop tools for real-time therapeutic
drug monitoring. Dr. Schoukroun-Barnes is
an analytical chemist at Pharmaceuticals
International, Inc. (APPLAUSE)>>Daniel Cameron Talley being
hooded by his mentor Dr. Paul Smith. Dr. Talley synthesized numerous
novel compounds to show – shown to inhibit replication
of the Hepatitis C virus. Dr. Talley will be conducted
post-doctoral research in medicinal chemistry at the
National Institutes of Health National Center for Advancing
Translational Sciences. (APPLAUSE)>>Gregory Winter being hooded by
his mentor Dr. William LaCourse. Dr. Winter developed the mass
spectrometry device that allows for the direct analysis of
compounds in their native environment with minimal sample
preparation dramatically reducing the run time of many
analytical, pharmaceutical and forensic applications. Dr. Winter is considering
several job opportunities in the Baltimore area. (APPLAUSE)>>Zana Coulibaly being hooded by
his mentor Dr. Bradford Peercy. Dr. Coulibaly used various
mathematical, analytical and computational tools to study
the mechanisms involved in regulating calcium dynamics
in cardiac cells relative to experimentally
observed behaviors. Dr. Coulibaly is currently
developing mathematical models related to cardiac
self-regulation as a post-doctoral fellow at the
University of California, Davis. (APPLAUSE)>>Samuel Khuvis who’s mentor
is Dr. Matthias Gobbert being hooded by Dr. Nagaraj Neerchal. Dr. Khuvis studied the
capability of the novel Intel Xenon Phi many-core architecture
to speed up fundamental numerical kernels
in simulation codes. Dr. Khuvis is currently
continuing his performance on – continuing his work on
performance analysis of real-world application codes
at ParaTools Incorporated. (APPLAUSE)>>Elande Baro, whose co-mentors
are Dr. Yi Huang and Dr. Anindya Roy, being hooded by Dr. Huang. Dr. Baro developed a Bayesian
average causal effects estimation methodology under
finite mixture modeling framework and extended the
standard propensity score-based causal framework to allow
for the covariance to have measurement error. Dr. Baro is currently a
mathematical statistician at the Center for Drug Evaluation
and Research at the FDA. (APPLAUSE)>>Marilena Flouri, being hooded
by her mentor, Dr. Thomas Mathew. Dr. Flouri has developed
statistical tolerance limits and confidence limits to address
the question of whether a new treatment or health care
intervention offers good value for the money. Dr. Flouri will join the U.S. FDA as a mathematical
statistician. (APPLAUSE)>>Daniel E. Jones, being hooded by his
mentor, Dr. Todd Pittman. Dr. Jones used optical
nanofibers to explore how fundamental interactions between
photons and atoms could be used for quantum information
processing. Dr. Jones will continue his
experimental research as a postdoc at the Army
Research Lab in Adelphi, Md. (APPLAUSE)>>Neetika Sharma, being hooded
by her mentor, Dr. T.J. Turner. Dr. Sharma used X-ray satellite
data to map and characterize the gas around the nuclear black
hole in the galaxy NGC 1068. This work helped us understand
the mass flow to and from the black hole. Dr. Sharma is currently working
as a research assistant at the NASA Goddard Space
Flight Center. (APPLAUSE)>>Yichuan Gui, being hooded
by his co-mentors, Dr. James Ting-Ho Lo and Dr.
Konstantinos Kalpakis. Dr. Gui developed a novel method
for training deep learning machines, such as those used in
AlphaGo, which defeated one of the best human Go players. Machine learning has wide
applications in artificial intelligence and system control. Dr. Gui is working on the
method’s computational speedup and applications to
image recognition. (APPLAUSE)>>Robert H. Holder, III, being hooded by his
co-mentors, Dr. Marie desJardins and Dr. Timothy Finin. Dr. Holder developed automated
planning algorithms that can react quickly to dynamically
varying environments by anticipating possible
changes before they occur. His work has many applications,
including efficient vehicle routing and electrical
power grid management. Dr. Holder is a senior software
engineer at ClearEdge IT Solutions, focusing on
extracting information from massive data sets. (APPLAUSE)>>Pavan Kumar Kamaraju, being
hooded by his co-mentors, Dr. Zary Segall and
Dr. Anupam Joshi. Dr. Kamaraju worked on improving
the quality of experience for cell phone users by proposing
methods to reduce the energy and date consumption of mobile
video, specifically by context-aware prefetching of
video and also adapting video based on individual
user perception. The overall video traffic and
energy consumption could be significantly reduced. Dr. Kamaraju is currently
working at a startup in Stockholm, Sweden, to create
next-generation connected retail experiences. (APPLAUSE)>>Cheng Gao, being hooded by
his mentor, Dr. Chein-I Chang. Dr. Gao investigated a
long-standing issue of end member variability, which
presents a great challenge in hyperspectral data exploitation. Dr. Gao further developed
several new and novel approaches to resolving this issue by
redesigning the well-known pattern classification, Fisher’s
Ratio, linear discriminant analysis and fully
abundance-constrained linear spectral mixture analysis. (APPLAUSE)>>Hsiao-Chi Li, being hooded by
her mentor, Dr. Chein-I Chang. Dr. Li’s doctoral research
investigates new approaches to calculating simplex volumes
from a geometric viewpoint and further takes advantage of this
newly derived concept to develop patentable techniques for
finding endmembers from hyperspectral imagery. Dr. Li will become an assistant
professor of computer science and information engineering at
Fu Jen Catholic University in Taiwan in Fall 2016. (APPLAUSE)>>Tanvir Mahmood, being hooded
by his mentor, Dr. Gary Carter. Dr. Mahmood developed a novel
nonlinear optical technique in photonic crystal fiber to
convert on-off modulated data into quadrature phase shifted
data and demonstrated effective transmission of the converted
data over 1600 kilometers in a fiber-optic system. Dr. Mahmood is currently senior
engineer, optical systems at Clarify in California. (APPLAUSE)>>Neha Sardesai, being hooded
by her co-mentors, Dr. Yordan Kostov and Dr. Joel Morris. Dr. Sardesai developed novel
methods and instrumentation systems for monitoring
impurification of cell-free protein expression, which
enables making pharmaceuticals on demand at the point of care. Dr. Sardesai is currently
interviewing with several higher education institutions to
continue her studies in the field of biomedical sensing. (APPLAUSE)>>Kelley Anne Gurley, being
hooded by her mentor, Dr. Anthony Norcio. Dr. Gurley used telehealth
device to determine the accuracy of self-reported data of the
older population based on their age, gender, employment status
and computer experience. Dr. Gurley has begun discussions
to extend her research through collaboration with other
telehealth device manufacturing companies and other
senior care facilities. (APPLAUSE)>>Gohar Mukhtar, being hooded by
his mentor, Dr. Anthony Norcio. Dr. Mukhtar explored
service-oriented architecture and issues related to the
measurability of its adoption maturity. He proposed a new measurement
tool and appointed maturity models centered on
design principles. Dr. Mukhtar currently
works for the U.S. government and intends to
continue growing his career in public service. (APPLAUSE)>>Dari Alhuwail, being
hooded by mentor, Dr. Koru. Dr. Alhuwail determined how
information technology can be used to better serve the
vulnerable and elderly patients while they receive health care
in their own home sittings. Dr. Alhuwail will start his
new journey as an assistant professor at Kuwait
University in Fall 2016. (LAUGHTER)>>Ali Azari, whose co-mentors
are Dr. Vandana Janeja and Dr. Scott Levin, being
hooded by Dr. Janeja. Dr. Azari has created novel
machine learning techniques to effectively predict
rare outcomes. His methods determined how
scarce health care resources may be managed to best care for
patient populations at The Johns Hopkins University. Dr. Azari is a predictive
modeling expert at Health Integrity, LLC, working with
computerized maintenance management system. His models have identified
millions of dollars in fraudulent health care claims. (APPLAUSE)>>Brandt Benedict Braunschweig,
being hooded by his mentor, Dr. Carolyn Seaman. Dr. Braunschweig investigated
team problem-solving in software design by creating a technique
to measure shared understanding and assessing the application of
this technique to improve the software design process. Dr. Braunschweig intends to
apply his research when he returns to industry. (APPLAUSE)>>Rose Celia Yesha, being hooded
by her mentor, Doctor Aryya Gangopadhyay. Dr. Yesha’s research focuses on
developing an automated method for analyzing
unstructured health data. This research was extended to
social media, electronic medical records and medical
case reports. Dr. Yesha is currently
considering postdoctoral offers in other positions
within industry. Dr. Yesha is the daughter of
CSEE professors Dr. Yaacov and Yelena Yesha. (APPLAUSE)>>Will the candidates for the
degree of Master of Fine Arts please rise? The MFA is the terminal
degree in this field. Dr. Hrabowski.>>Dr. Rutledge.>>Dr. Hrabowski, I have the honor
of presenting the candidates recommended by the faculty of
the University of Maryland Graduate School Baltimore for
the degree of Master of Fine Arts.>>Upon the recommendation of the
faculty and by the authority of the state of Maryland given to
the board of regents and the chancellor of the University
System of Maryland, and by them entrusted to me, I hereby admit
you to the degree of Master of Fine Arts which you’ve earned
during the course of your studies at the University
of Maryland Graduate School Baltimore. In token whereof, you shall be
given a diploma with all of the honors, privileges and
responsibilities thereunto pertaining.>>Will the candidates for the
degree of Master of Fine Arts now please proceed with their
mentors to the plaform to receive your diplomas? (APPLAUSE)>>Thomas A. Boram III, being hooded by his
mentor, Professor Steve Bradley. Dr. Boram created an
experimental television program based on a probabilistic
algorithm that organizes a database of modular footage
into endless episodes of sci-fi spaceship drama. Dr. Boram plans on continuing
his artistic pursuits in Baltimore City and seeks a
full-time teaching position in higher education. (APPLAUSE)>>Elena Katherine Stack DeBold,
being hooded by her mentor, Dr. Kathy O’Dell. Through a collaboration with
a now-incarcerated childhood friend and his family, Dr.
DeBold explored structural, institutional and environmental
racism within systems of mass incarceration. Her research culminated in a
multimedia installation, evoking and soliciting empathy – a vital
step toward social change. Dr. DeBold will continue as a
practicing artist and activist. (APPLAUSE)>>William Edward Stitt, being
hooded by his mentor, Dr. Kathy O’Dell. Using GoPro video technology,
Mr. Stitt researched the temporal spatial and
philosophical dimensions of prolonged nighttime driving. The result – a video projection
and sound installation represents for the viewer
the postmodern condition of heterotopia. Dr. Stitt will continue
as a practicing artist. (APPLAUSE)>>Clifford Eamon Evans, being
hooded by his mentor, Professor Timothy Nohe. Mr. Evans incorporated
sculptural forms, animation and drawing to reflect upon the
partial failures and enduring myths of the space age and
abstract art in the 20th century. Mr. Evans plans to exhibit his
work nationally with a studio practice based in Baltimore. (APPLAUSE)>>Will the candidates for the
degrees of Master of Arts, Master of Public Policy, Master
of Science and Master in Professional
Studies please rise? (APPLAUSE)>>Dr. Hrabowski.>>Dr. Rutledge.>>Dr. Hrabowski, I now have the honor
of presenting the candidates recommended by the faculty of
the University of Maryland Graduate School Baltimore for
the degrees of Master of Arts, Master of Public Policy, Master
of Science and Master in Professional Studies.>>Upon the recommendation of the
faculty and by the authority of the state of Maryland given to
the board of regents and the chancellor of the University
System of Maryland, and by them entrusted to me, I hereby admit
you to the degree which you have earned during the course of your
studies at the University of Maryland Graduate
School Baltimore. In token whereof, you shall be
given a diploma with all of the honors, privileges and
responsibilities thereunto pertaining.>>Thank you, and
please be seated. Will the candidates for master’s
degrees now proceed to the platform to receive
your diplomas. Please remain seated until your
row has been escorted to the stage. Dr. Robert Deluty Associate Dean
of the graduate school will read the names of the Master of Arts,
Master of Public Policy, Master of Science, and Master of
Professional Studies degree candidates.>>In the Erickson School
candidates for the degree of Master of Arts in the program of
Management of Aging Services – Matthew K Berry, Marcus
Percell Hockaday, Ikechukwu E. Nwizu, Jamie C. Jaegers, Justin Allen Wolf,
BreAna Nicole Moss, Molly LeGrand, Alyson Nicole Olmstead,
Maria Andrea Ramirez, Augusta Adaobi Osefoh, Ashley Aleksandra
Lacias, Simone Omotola Abe, Rita B.  Choula, Kevin David Heffner,  Haymanot Asfaw Yalewayker,Kola B. Bakre. In the College of Arts,
Humanities, and Social Sciences candidates for the degree for
the Master of Arts in the Department of Economics in
the Policy of Economic Policy Analysis – Bryan
Gale, William W. Wittler, III. In the program of the
Instructional Systems Development – Shelby Lea Byrd,
Ouatta Coulibaly, Matthew Henry Heller, Stephanie A. Graves, Melissa A. Lopes, Bredell Michael
Evans, Jr., Erica J. Ellis, Adediwura
Adeyinka, Vivian U. Slaughter-Mitchell. In the program of English for
Speakers of Other Languages – Christopher Scott McKinnon,
Bosun Choi, Carla Danielle Silva Hounshell, William
Armstrong, Hilary R. Reintges. In the program of Teaching –
Curtis Anderson, Tierra C. Turner, Fabiola Rodriquez,
Kelsey Marie Coyle, Hee Jeung Jeun, Sarah Naomi Stevens
Spencer, Mays Saed, Demetria Eloisa Cuellar-McAndrew, Melissa
Louise Mahoney, Heather M. Brown, Christopher Paul Fiscus,
Eric Philip Surkovich, Laura Catherine Frey, Brendan H. Kennedy, Christopher
Mercado, Eric Andrew Eller. In the Department of History
in the Program of Historical Studies – Michael R. Bealefeld, Jacob M. Bensen, Conor Donnan, Tyler
Peterson, Allyson Lauren Schuele, Michael Joseph
Stone, Cole Volman. In the Department of Modern
Languages, Linguistics, and Intercultural Communication in
the program of Intercultural Communication – Elena
Bzhedugova, Paula Villanueva de Miguel. In the Department of English in
the program of Text, Technology, and Literature – Ronald M. Harvilicz, III, Philip M. Hiotis, Deborah F. Kadiri, Daria Kuznetsova. In the Department of Psychology,
in the program of Applied Developmental Psychology – Laura
DeWyngaert, Lisa Marie Shanty, Cassandra L. Simons. In the program of Human
Services Psychology – Wendy M. Pinder, Samantha Palmyra
Bier Bento, Gregory B. Epstein, Lakeya S. McGill, Gabriella
Alessandra Ulloa, Joshua M. Firestone. In the Department of Sociology
and Anthropology in the program of Applied Sociology –
Timothy Paul Antlitz, Steven Andres-Aquino, Patricia M. Abreu, Katherine Nora Mark,
Gabrielle Noel Parson, Victoria Lynn Skinner, Kerri Wills. In the College of Arts,
Humanities and Social Sciences candidates for the degree of
Master of Public Policy in the School of Public Policy –
Nirshiee Arumugam, Kelsey Hanna Goering, Michael J. Lessmeier, Sravanthi
Padullaparti, Christy Marie Villalobos. Candidates for the degree of
Master in Professional Studies in the Department of Geography
And Environmental System in the program of Geographic
Information Systems – Jeannine Cody, Ricky Luckford Mwanza. In the Department of Psychology
in the program of Industrial Organizational Psychology –
Candace Sharon Brown, Dana Marie Fusco, Amanda Marie Jones,
Carolyn Stroup, Lauren Elizabeth Roman, Samantha Gail Jonson,
Stephanie Ezequiel, Kathleen Elaine Howes, Amal Mohammed
Sinnokrot, Barbara Christine Jensen Blau, John Pono
Van Gieson, Alexandra D. Gold, Amanda Michelle Norton,
Shirley Thomas Gavelan, Tonny Sultana, Jori Leslie
Allen-Wilcox. In the College of Arts
Humanities and Social Sciences candidates for the degree
of Master of Science in the Department of Emergency Health
Services in the program of Emergency Health Services –
Abdulmajeed Ali Alamri, Hussin Albargi, Mahmoud
Alatawi, Abdulhadi A. Al Ruwaithi, Alaa Sami Sairafi,
Ayisatu Jeanette Taylor. In the College of Natural and
Mathematical Sciences candidates for the degree of Master of
Science in the department of Biological Sciences in the
program of Applied Molecular Biology – Raveena Priyanka
Edwards, Palak Shah, Sarah Ashley Campbell, Owen Kwok,
Jason Amores Sumpter, Rachel Katheryn Hartig, Brooke M. Luisi, Julie E. Norton, Nima Nassehi, Stephen
Thomas Petr, Andrew Blake. In the Department of Mathematics
and Statistics in the program of Applied Mathematics – Joshua
Daniel Austin, Benjamin Eric Klein. In the program of
Statistics – Simin Shi. In the program of Atmospheric
Physics – Anthony Michah. Candidates for the degree of
Master in Professional Studies in the department of Biological
Sciences in the program of Biotechnology – Roya
Hakimzadeh, Priya L. Persaud, Anastasia B. Mccafferty, Lumanti Manandhar,
Vishma Raj Pahari, Labchan Rajbhandari. In the College of Engineering
and Information Technology candidates for the degree
of Master of Science in the Department of Chemical,
Biochemical and Environmental Engineering in the program
of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering – Luis Felipe
Cuellar Patino, Don Wong, Neil Agarwal, Nadia Sedghi, Azadeh
Bazarchi Shabestar, Li Chen. In the program of Computer
Science – Kenneth H. Barton, Mark Allen Lotts,
Kiante’ Brantley, Spoorthi Podduturi, Karan Kumar
Budhraja, Jihad Sadallah Ashkar, Georgiy Frolov, Amer Tahir,
Shashank Devan, Prachi Bora, Vaishali Ravindra
Narkhede, Richa Gandhewar, Neha Mohan Tilak, Aishwarya
Subhashchandra Bhide, Mandar Keshav Haldekar, Shrinivas Shashikant Kant, Amitanshu Kumar Jha. In the program of Electrical
Engineering – Rose Joseph Kunnappallil, Suchita Vishwanath Bhinge. In the program of Systems
Engineering – Geoffrey Lappi, Nicole Tedeschi, Servia
Guadalupe Del Villar, Peter K. Georgiev. In the department of Engineering
Management and Information Technology, in the program of
Engineering Management – Jeffrey Elwood Strulic, Angelica Muniz Mercado, Zane Benjamin Slatcher, John
Joseph Panek, Kyle F. Mach, Lindsay Dawn Thomasson,
Shridevi Mulgund, Sneha Chandrakant Dhande, Raheel
Gandhi, Manjusha Dekate, Tarun Kota, Andy Nwali, Bhushan Kulkarni, Hammaad Salik, Nehasri Reddy Tippana, Mandar Gurudas
Keni, Neha Appana, Pooja Venkat Agru, Kenneth Wayne Baptist,
Nihal Nikunj Desai. In the department of Information
Systems, in the program of Human-Centered Computing –
Chris-Anne Correa, Chelsea Rose Hunt, Shawn M. Segal, Jazmin N. Childress, Constance Adelle
King, Carolyn Jaron Stum, Sally Chan, Esraa Abdulrahman
Alseeni, Jatin Chhikara. In the program of Information
Systems – Isaiah Choongsub Yoon, Olumuyiwa Olukayode Somide,
Joseph Lee Christou, Andrew Thomas Sunderland, Jonathan
Darius Torney, Natalya Mikailova, Alyssa M. Straniero, Matthew Joseph
Kulesza, Kenneth Franklin Hall, Saurabh Shetty, Simisola T. Ogundijo, Stephanie Eneline Beaute, Astha Jain, Nayan Dubey, Charles Rhamazany,
Orville Pinto, Jimish Kadakia, Sankalp Danpumar
Sawant, Sneha Nilwarna, Suparna Ahuja, Prachi Singla,
Vivek Desai, Bhanu Pratap Singh, Adwait Kawatkar, Albert J. Sotto, Joseph K. Strickland, Niteesh Potu,
Venkata Sai Phanendra Mada, Vineeth Yalavarthi, Manikanth
Sarisa, Anirudh Akkati, Harikiran Panguluri, Indira R. Poosapati, Daniel Mark Verbus,
Clinton Beriah Woodard, Jr., Kena Nicole Jackson. In the department on Mechanical
Engineering, in the program of Mechanical Engineering – Oscar
Jaime Serna, Amit Patil. Candidates for the degree of
Master in Professional Studies. In the department of Computer
Science and Electrical Engineering, in the program of
Cybersecurity – Michael Lloyd Pearce, Eric Bryant Chapman,
Oladotun Benson Adefiyiju, Joshua M. Angichiodo, Jeffrey Ryan Algoet,
Clifford Carroll Kooser, III, Darryn LaMonte Sydnor, Sarah
Purdum, Christopher Fleischmann, Monica Ellis-Gorham, Zara Jhia
Jariol, Arti Ramesh Deore, Brandon Avery Greene, Jason
Schlemmer, Deketa Shanaye Wall, Santa Marie Adams, Diamond
Adams, Chuka Uzokwe, Prachi Rakesh Gandhi, Pooja Patil, Kinnari Waghmare, Manasi Uday Desai, Tanvi Shirodkar, Rahul Raj Koul, Abhijeet Desai, Amit Jayarama
Shetty, Priyanka Shinkar, Sourabh Arsey, Dhawal Virenda Kapadia, Deepika Vijay Kumar Goel, Abhishek Anant
Patkar, Barath Pandiyan, Chhand Mehta, Bipin Prasad Singh,
Krishna Patel, Rahul Anantoju, Karthik Chandrasekaran,
Swapnil Sungare, Bhavsar Aniket Bhaskar,
Taranjot Singh Ramana. (APPLAUSE)>>We
are almost there. This is so exciting. At this point, first of all, I’m
asking everyone to remain until we are actually moving
out of the auditorium. After the singing of the alma
mater, please remain with us until then. I’d like to introduce Mr.
Kenneth Pittman, who’s president of the Alumni
Association board. He’s representing 70,000 UMBC
graduates, graduated from UMBC in 1980 with a
degree in Economics. And he’s senior vice president
at BB&T over wealth management – a strategist there. Please give him a
round of applause. (APPLAUSE)>>Graduates, take
this last moment here to savor your success. You have worked so
hard for a long time. It has been my tradition to
quote the words of our first UMBC president, the late Dr.
Albin Kuhn, who spoke to the first graduating class in 1970. And he said these words. If you bring to the future the
same personal qualities and personal commitment you’ve
brought to this campus as students, good and important
things will happen to each of you and to those around you. And the university will be proud
to have played a part in your lives. And now let me leave you with my
own thoughts about your future – words that I give each year. Be confident, knowing that the
education you have received here gives you that solid foundation
for the rest of your lives. Know that if you persevere –
and we know you will – you will reach your goals, though you
are certain to continue to be challenged and
tested along the way. But just remember – your dreams,
and most important, your character, will determine
who you will become. Your character will be reflected
most clearly in the courage you possess and in the compassion
you show for others. Be true to yourselves and true
in your relationships, always reaching out to
inspire and to elevate. Graduates, we are
so proud of you. You are now officially
alumni of UMBC. You will be connected
to us always. Remember, this is your home. Let’s give them a
standing ovation, please. (APPLAUSE)>>And please remain seated –
standing – I mean standing. Please remain standing. As everyone remains here through
the singing of our alma mater, you will find the words on
the inside back cover of the commencement program. After the singing of the
alma mater, we will have the recessional, and then we
can go and enjoy ourselves. Thank you all for being
a wonderful audience. Give yourselves a big
round of applause. (UMBC ALMA MATER)

Michael Martin

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