Commencement is always a time of great celebration on the campus of Geneva College — and this year was no exception. Family and friends of the 583 graduates gathered for the undergraduate and the graduate and adult commencement programs held at separate ceremonies on May 7. Off-campus ceremonies were held for graduates of Geneva′s partner programs: the Center for Urban Biblical Ministry (CUBM) in Pittsburgh and the Center for Urban Theological Studies (CUTS) in Philadelphia. Each graduate has a unique story to tell and Provost Ken Carson ′79 shared the following inspirational stories from the Class of 2011.
Bernice (ADCP ′11) and Camille (ADCP ′11) Hayes received their diplomas together as mother and daughter. They learned, studied and graduated together as members of the Adult Degree Completion Program (ADCP) in the Human Services cohort 13. Their cohort met in Pittsburgh at the Allegheny Center Alliance Church.
Also from the ADCP program was Valerie Steave, who holds the record for being the oldest graduate of the Class of 2011 at the tender age of 72. She demonstrated a remarkable commitment to earning her degree in Community Ministry. Valerie started the degree completion program in cohort 37 but, due to illness and necessary treatment for cancer, was forced to withdraw. She was readmitted to cohort 38 and has completed her course of study. Valerie received a standing ovation at the commencement ceremonies in recognition of her tremendous achievement.
Following the completion of his degree through the ADCP program in 2008, Police Chief Charles “Mick” Jones continued his education in the Master′s of Science in Organizational Leadership (MSOL) program. He graduated with his cohort at Commencement 2011. Chief Jones is not only a valuable member of the Geneva community, he is also a tremendous leader in the Beaver Falls community. He and his staff were particularly instrumental and compassionate in the search and eventual discovery of the body of Devon Minor.
Family and friends that attended the commencement ceremonies were given the opportunity to receive messages from God′s Word from Geneva alumni. Rev. Dan Kiehl (′83) pastor of Meadowcroft Presbyterian Church and father of Leah ′11, provided the message at Baccalaureate; Dr. Saleem Ghubril, (′99) honorary degree recipient and Executive Director of Pittsburgh Promise challenged the undergraduates; and Dr. Ann Paton ′58, professor emerita of English and assisting priest at Church of the Ascension, spoke at the graduate and adult graduate ceremony. It was a pleasure for respected Geneva alumni to welcome the new graduates into their new role as fellow Geneva alumni.
In honor of their notable achievements, Dr. John Manzetti (′68) and Dr. Jerry O'Neill (′69) were presented with honorary doctorates at this year's commencement by President Ken Smith '80. Also, an honorary Doctor of Law degree will be given to Young Park, Esq. during commencement at the Center for Urban Theological Studies (CUTS), an urban Philadelphia collegiate partner of Geneva College, on Saturday, June 4.
Some interesting facts about Geneva College′s Class of 2011:
324 graduated from one of Geneva′s 30+ undergraduate programs.
124 graduates received master′s degrees from one of Geneva′s seven graduate programs
135 graduates received their degrees from one of the college′s non-traditional undergraduate programs including the Adult Degree Completion Program (ADCP), the Center for Urban Biblical Ministry (CUBM) and the Center for Urban Theological Studies (CUTS).
Geneva celebrates the diversity represented in its non-traditional programs. Of those completing the ADCP, CUTS and CUBM programs, 55 percent of the graduates are of African American, Hispanic or Asian descent.
Congratulations to the Class of 2011! Please visit the Geneva College website to view photos of the commencement celebration.
Please join us in prayer for these new Geneva alumni as they seek to serve God′s kingdom. Please also pray for Geneva College as it continues its mission of providing a Christ-centered, academically-challenging education.
Save the Date: Plan to go “Back to the Future” and join us for Homecoming 2011 on October 1!