June 2 Commencements: Two ceremonies

June 04, 2012

June 2 Commencements: Two ceremoniesSaint Leo University hosted local commencement ceremonies in Tampa, FL, and at the Air Force Base in Columbus, MS, on Saturday, June 2. In both settings, the new graduates earned their college degrees as adult learners.

In Tampa, graduates and their families were addressed by retired U.S. Navy Rear Admiral Jon W. Bayless, Jr. Having spent 31 years in the Navy, the rear admiral commended Saint Leo on its longstanding commitment to offering educational opportunities to service members, veterans, and families. In congratulating the graduates, he said: “Knowledge is weightless, a treasure that you can always carry very easily.”

Theresa Bauer, who delivered the student farewell address, said the diverse group of individuals comprising the class of 2012 shared a commonality in the defining “choice each of us made to pursue higher education as an adult.” The average age of the graduates assembled, she noted, was 32. In her own case, she said it took more than seven years to complete her Bachelor of Arts in human resources management, but doing so brought her a level of personal fulfillment she had long wanted.

In addition to the Bachelor of Arts degree, other degrees conferred in Tampa were: the Associate of Arts, Bachelor of Applied Science, Bachelor of Science, Master of Science (in critical incident management and in criminal justice) and Master of Business Administration. In all, about 115 new graduates participated.

In Mississippi, U.S. Air Force Colonel and Vice Commander of the 14th Flying Training Wing Matthew C. Isler addressed the graduates. Students in Columbus, MS, study at the Saint Leo Center located at the Air Force Base in Columbus. Benjamin LaFoon, who graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in business administration, delivered the student farewell. All the degrees conferred were Bachelor of Arts degrees.