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2016 Commencement Speaker Competition

 To promote EIU's commitment to strengthening the academic and personal experience for our students and to showcase examples of exemplary writing and speaking, Eastern Illinois University introduced the Student Commencement Speaker Series in 2013 replacing the former student and faculty speaker traditions at Eastern.   The student speaker representing the Graduate School was featured during the Fall 2016 ceremony.

Announcing the 2016 selected graduate student speaker:

Amanda Patterson 

Amanda Patterson, MBA- spoke at the 10:00 am ceremony and was introduced by her faculty mentor Dr. Bill Minnis

Read Amanda's essay here.


Elyse Podwojski, MBA, was selected as the alternate speaker. Her mentor was also Dr. Bill Minnis.