By Rachel Terlep
NEW ALBANY, Ind. – Indiana University Southeast conferred 995 degrees at the 48th Commencement on Monday, May 9, at Freedom Hall in Louisville.
The Class of 2016 was made up of 967 candidates earning 870 bachelor’s degrees, 99 master’s degrees and 26 associate’s degrees. Forty-one students walked across the stage with a perfect 4.0 grade point average.
“It is the dream of every educator – and every parent – for the next generation to be better and better off,” Chancellor Ray Wallace said in his presentation of the class. “You, the members of the Class of 2016, are living proof of IU Southeast’s vision to shape the future of our region by transforming good students into great leaders, one graduate at a time.”
Chemistry student Anthony Ewurum delivered the class response during the ceremony. In his remarks, Ewurum highlighted his 6,000-mile journey from Nigeria to obtain his degree from IU Southeast and how he found a second family with the school community.
“We must also not forget the people who have helped us get there because believing in someone is an investment that should not be taken lightly,” Ewurum said. “The best way you can thank them is to aspire with every fiber of your being to make a difference. We might not change the world, but we can change the community we live in because IU Southeast has equipped us for the journey ahead.”
Joey Rivera, ’93, was presented the 2016 Distinguished Alumni Award during the ceremony. Rivera provides cyber warfare expertise to the U.S. Cyber Command.
The Class of 2016 ranges in age from 19 to 68 and hails from 31 Indiana counties, seven U.S. states and 16 countries of origin. Nearly 36 percent of these candidates will become the first in their families to attain an undergraduate degree.
More than 26,000 IU Southeast degrees have been awarded since 1968. Nearly 85 percent of graduates remain in Indiana and the Louisville metropolitan area.
Video of the full 2016 IU Southeast Commencement Ceremony:
Photo credit: Sam Upshaw Jr./The Courier-Journal. Link to full album here.