More than 500 summer and fall graduates plan to participate in Eastern Illinois University's Fall 2009 commencement ceremonies, scheduled to take place Saturday, Dec. 19, in Lantz Arena.
Ceremonies will take place at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Guest tickets are required for admission.
Graduating seniors from the Lumpkin College of Business and Applied Sciences and the College of Arts and Humanities will march in the morning ceremony, while students from the College of Education and Professional Studies, the College of Sciences and the School of Continuing Education (Bachelor of Arts in General Studies Degree) will march in the afternoon. Graduate students will march with their respective colleges.
President William L. Perry will preside over the ceremonies. Music will be provided by the EIU Wind Symphony.
Les R. Hyder, who was named the 2009 recipient of the Luis Clay Mendez Distinguished Service Award, will be publicly recognized during the 10 a.m. ceremony for outstanding service to Eastern, to his profession and to the community. This award is presented annually by Eastern's Faculty Senate.
Jonathan F. Gosse, editor-in-chief for American Publishers Inc., Homewood, Ill., and current chair of Eastern's School of Technology Advisory Board, will present the "Charge to the Class" during the morning ceremony. Jill F. Nilsen, EIU's retiring vice president for external relations, will speak during the 1 p.m. ceremony. Both Gosse and Nilsen are EIU graduates.
Also addressing graduates will be Faculty Senate Chairperson John Henry Pommier and Student Body President Michelle Murphy.
Representing Eastern's Board of Trustees will be Don W. Yost of Charleston at 10 a.m. and Eric P. Wilber of Monticello at 1 p.m.
Traditionally, a commencement marshal leads the commencement procession while carrying the university mace, a symbol of honor accorded a faculty member. The commencement marshal for the 10 a.m. ceremony will be Jill F. Nilsen who, as a professor of communication disorders and sciences, will represent the Graduate School. Representing the School of Continuing Education at 1 p.m. will be Pat J. Fewell, chair of the EIU Department of Secondary Education and Foundations.
An EIU tradition also allows faculty members the honor of carrying the college banner for his/her college during the procession.
This year's faculty marshals for the morning ceremony are Thomas R. Hawkins, associate professor, School of Technology, representing the Graduate School and the Lumpkin College of Business and Applied Sciences; Julie A. Chadd, assistant professor, School of Technology, representing the LCBAS; Olaf Hoerschelmann, associate professor, communication studies, representing the Graduate School and the College of Arts and Humanities; and Suzan G. Braun, professor, art, representing the CAH.
This year's faculty marshals for the afternoon ceremony are Gail M. Lockart, professor, early childhood, elementary and middle level education, representing the Graduate School and the College of Education and Professional Studies; Judith A. Barford, assistant professor, early childhood, elementary and middle level education, representing the CEPS; Jeffrey R. Laursen, associate professor, biological sciences, representing the Graduate School and the College of Sciences; Richard A. Wandling, professor, political science, representing the COS; and Anita Shelton, chair, history, representing the School of Continuing Education.