UCF Holds Spring 2019 Commencement Ceremonies May 2-4, More Than 8,200 Degrees Conferred
By Anthony Moore, U.C.F. Communications // May 1, 2019
ceremonies will recognize the 50,000th degree conferred through DirectConnect
ORLANDO, FLORIDA – More than 8,200 degrees will be conferred at UCF’s Spring 2019 Commencement, May 2-4. This event will be held at Addition Financial Arena (formerly, the CFE Arena), 12777 Gemini Boulevard N., Orlando, Fla. 32816.
The ceremonies will recognize the 50,000th degree conferred through DirectConnect, celebrate the first class of UCF’s Inclusive Education Services, and award a posthumous doctorate degree to two children who lost their mother just as she reached a lifelong dream to obtain her PhD.
Throughout its history, UCF has taken pride in the diversity of its student body. The University annually graduates the third-highest number of minorities in the nation.
Nearly half of the Spring 2019 degrees will be awarded to students from minority communities, with Hispanic graduates earning more than one quarter of the degrees. Since beginning classes in 1968, UCF has awarded approximately 335,000 degrees.
Ceremonies held on Friday, May 3, will include these highlights:
9 a.m. ceremony:
- DirectConnect to UCF—which guarantees admission to UCF for students who’ve earned an associate’s degree from one of six Florida state colleges—will confer its 50,000th degree. The first program of its kind in the country, DirectConnect to UCF has become a national model for providing access to affordable education at unprecedented levels. The program has helped the University increase diversity and serve more first-generation and low income students.
2:30 p.m. ceremony:
- The children of Maribel Pina, one of whom is a UCF student, will accept their mother’s degree posthumously. Pina was so determined to complete her doctorate in educational leadership that she worked on her research even whileundergoing chemotherapy treatments. Sadly, she lost her battle with cancer in January.
- UCF’s Inclusive Education Services—which provides individuals with intellectual disabilities access to a post-secondary education and workforce readiness training—will recognize its first cohort of 13 graduates.
UCF’s Spring 2019 commencement speakers are William Yeargin, president and CEO of Correct Craft and a UCF Trustee; Frank A. St. John, a UCF alumnus and executive vice president of missiles and fire control for Lockheed Martin Corp.; Georgia Lorenz, president of Seminole State College of Florida; Paul F. Browning, president and CEO of Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems Americas; Judy Duda, chairman of the executive council for the Dean of the College of Arts and Humanities; and Robert A. McDonald, former secretary of Veterans Affairs.
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