By Jack Molitor
The Herald Bulletin
ANDERSON, Ind. —
Anderson University awarded more than 650 doctoral, master’s, bachelor’s and associate degrees Saturday at the university’s 95th commencement.
Faculty lined the entrance to Kardatzke Wellness Center and ushered in the graduates for the event. For the students completing months and years of coursework, the graduation was a relieving award.
Aaron Mays of Gary said he originally chose Anderson because it was relatively close, had a good business program and was priced right for him and his family. Mays now has a master’s degree in business, and plans to look for opportunities out West when his family moves to Tucson, Ariz., in two weeks.
“It feels like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders. Now I get to have my nights back and spend some time with my family,” Mays said. “Feels good.”
University President James L. Edwards gave the welcome and charge to the class to start the ceremony. Edwards commended the class on their achievement and asked them to work hard in an increasingly unforgiving employment atmosphere.
“You gave the effort and paid the price to receive a still rare college degree. You represent some of our best hopes,” Edwards said.
The school also awarded two honorary degrees to Dr. Robert W. McCurdy and television reporter Andrea Morehead Allen. Allen also gave the commencement speech.
“I want to take in this moment, because I never thought it would be part of my future,” Allen said.
Allen, an Emmy Award-winning anchor for WTHR in Indianapolis, was born and raised in Anderson and her father teaches at the university. Anderson University is affiliated with the Church of God denomination of Christianity, and Allen talked about how her faith and convictions have been important to how she approaches life.
“A good education doesn’t necessarily lead to intelligence. You need a strong foundation in life,” Allen said.
After receiving their diplomas, the graduates filed out of the center and greeted their families. The next step for many of them is to find a career in their field against a thin market.
Whitney Speicher of Warsaw, who received a master’s in nursing, was already working as a nurse when a professor came to talk about the school’s master’s degree programs. She said she hopes what she learned will help her even more in work.
“I’m really excited,” Speicher said.
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