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Graduation 2016

Graduation Photos

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All of the information you need to get ready for KWU Commencement Weekend, May 6–7, 2016, is right here at your fingertips: 

2016 Graduation Online Book

For more information about Graduation Week 2016, please contact Jan Shirk at extension 4302 (785-833-4302).


Getting Ready to Graduate: "Salute to Graduates" - Wednesday, April 6 | 11 a.m.–1 p.m. | Hauptli Student Center

This is an open-house style event for graduating students to pick up your cap and gown, get information about the graduation ceremonies, and more. Vendors, including Yotee's, will make available graduation items such as announcements, diploma frames and class rings, and an opportunity to contribute to the Class Gift Program. Light refreshments will be served. No RSVP necessary, just stop by.

Nursing Pinning Ceremony | Friday, May 6 | 4 p.m. | Fitzpatrick Auditorium | Sams Hall of Fine Arts | WATCH THE VIDEO HERE

Join Dr. Matt Thompson and Dr. Debra Logan, R.N., as they congratulate graduates of the Nursing program in a traditional Pinning ceremony. Nursing Class Photo at 3:30 p.m. in Fitzpatrick Auditorium.

Senior Picnic | Friday, May 6 | 5 p.m. | Student Activities Center - Hauptli Student Center and Student Activities Center Patio & Commons

Alumni, Faculty, Staff and Trustees are invited to join our 2016 graduation candidates and their families at our annual Senior Picnic! Food lines in the Hauptli Student Center, inside the Student Activities Center, with outdoor seating on the patio and commons, weather permitting, and indoor seating in Hauptli Student Center. All attendees, including students and family members, please RSVP by April 30. Watch here for a link to sign up.

Honors and Awards Convocation | Friday, May 6 | 7 p.m. | Sams Chapel | Hall of the Pioneers

President Matt Thompson, Provost Nancy Cummings and members of the KWU community will convene to honor and congratulate the recipients of academic departments and programs awards, as well as by Student Government Association (SGA). Invitations to Award Honorees will be placed in campus mailboxes between April 20 and 24, 2015. Awardees are welcome to invite as many family members and other guests as they wish. The public is invited to attend.

Baccalaureate Service | Saturday, May 7 | 11 a.m. | University United Methodist Church, next to campus - Claflin and Santa Fe Avenues

Baccalaureate is a service of worship for the graduating class, their families, faculty, administration, staff, trustees and friends. It is a traditional time of seeding the presence and power of God at a unique moment in the graduate’s life. The term “baccalaureate” also is the name of the degree colleges and universities confer as a bachelor’s degree. Sometimes a degree is referenced as being at the “baccalaureate” level. A Class of 2016 photo will be taken on the front steps of The Hall of the Pioneers immediately following the Baccalaureate service. Copies of the photo will be available for purchase from the University’s online photo website soon after Commencement Weekend. 

Class of 2016 Formal Photo | Saturday, May 7 | 12 p.m. | Front Steps, Hall of the Pioneers

Commencement Ceremony | Saturday, May 7 | 3 p.m. | Mabee Arena | Student Activities Center | WATCH THE VIDEO HERE

Open seating in the area designated for guests will be on a first-come, first served basis. The doors will open at 1:30 p.m. for the graduates’ family members and friends. Guests should not leave until the entire ceremony is completed and all candidates have been recognized. Commencement programs will be distributed to guests as they arrive for the ceremony. Parking is available within walking distance of the arena. Parking spaces reserved for disabled persons should be used only by those vehicles with the proper tag. Commencement guests who are wheelchair-bound or who have physical limitations should use the elevator located at the south side of Hauptli Student Center and proceed across Brown Mezzanine and through the arena doors for viewing from the upper-level deck. The Graduation Reception will be held in Muir Gym, next door to Mabee Arena, following the end of the Commencement Ceremony at approximately 4:30 p.m.


Commencement speaker Dr. Dean EllisonThe Commencement speaker for May 2016 is Dr. Dean Ellison, Class of 1980. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry from Kansas Wesleyan and a Ph.D. from the University of Kansas, and then he began developing hands-on analytical methods at Merck Pharmaceutical in Princeton, New Jersey. As senior director at Merck, Dr. Ellison led numerous product development teams and directly managed departments of more than 150 staff on three continents, learning Japanese for his management duties in Japan. He has published more than 30 scientific papers in peer-reviewed journals, has authored numerous book chapters and is a frequently invited speaker at both domestic and global conferences. Dr. Ellison is currently vice president of CMC Development Services for ExecuPharm, which provides clinical research support services for the pharmaceutical industry, including staff placements. READ MORE