Commencement ceremonies for the University of Illinois Springfield will begin at 2 p.m. on Saturday, May 14, at the Prairie Capital Convention Center, Ninth and Adams streets in downtown Springfield. Of the 1,294 students eligible to graduate, 728 will participate in the ceremony.
Tickets are not required for admission and seating will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. There is no reserved seating except for special needs such as interpretive services and wheelchairs. The doors to the main floor of the center will open at 1 p.m.
The commencement speaker will be Martin R. Castro, chairperson of the United States Commission on Civil Rights (“USCCR”) as well as chairperson of the Illinois Human Rights Commission ("IHRC") and president of a Chicago area consulting firm. In January 2011, President Barack Obama appointed Castro to the USCCR and named him chairperson in March. He is the first Latino chairperson in the history of the USCCR. The USCCR is an independent, bipartisan federal agency whose mission is to investigate complaints alleging that citizens are being deprived of their right to vote and the IHRC adjudicates individual claims of discrimination under Illinois law.
The son and grandson of Mexican immigrants, Castro was the first in his family to graduate from high school and the first to obtain a higher education. He received his B.A. in political science in 1985 from DePaul University and his Juris Doctorate degree from the University of Michigan Law School in 1988. In 2001-2002, Castro ran in the Democratic primary for U.S. Congress in Chicago’s Fourth District.
Donald E. O’Neal, professor of Management at UIS, has been chosen to serve as faculty grand marshal. The student speaker will be Charles Olivier, who will graduate with a bachelor’s degree with majors in Business Administration and Accountancy. Olivier is also the UIS Student Representative to the University of Illinois Board of Trustees.
Faculty and students in each academic program select one graduating student who best exemplifies the goals and spirit of that program to serve as student marshal for the ceremony.
This year’s marshals are:
Accountancy: Cori Marie Hurt – B.A. (Peoria), Heather Jones – B.A., Kiley Lynette Underwood – M.A.
Biology: Amy Bernadette Johnson – B.S., Shawn Kristen Gibbs – M.S.
Business Administration: Sheri Nicole Denning – B.B.A., Joshua Aaron Winkler – M.B.A. (Peoria), David Ross Guggenheim – M.B.A.
Chemistry: Kimberly A. Bartosiak – B.S.
Clinical Laboratory Science: Andrea Leigh Gardner – B.S.
Communication: Marissa Lauren Sumrell – B.A., Carol Leonie Marie Schulte – M.A.
Computer Science: Daniel R. Hancock – B.S., Sean R. Brown – M.S.
Criminal Justice: Kasey Nicole Kofoid – B.A. (Peoria), Zachary R. Miller – B.A.
Economics: Karen Beth Lockhart – B.A.
Educational Leadership: Rae Lynne Meyer – M.A.
English: Caron C. Tate – B.A., Stephanie Marie Ebersohl – M.A.
Environmental Studies: Nathaniel Michael Keener – M.A.
History: Holly Elizabeth Ropp Brock – B.A., Amanda L. Dahlquist – M.A.
Human Development Counseling: Joshua Patrick Wertz – M.A.
Human Services: Karen Inez Harrold – M.A.
Legal Studies: Jessica J. Jolly – B.A., Tracey Lynn Jensen – M.A.
Liberal and Integrative Studies: Ryan Chandler – M.A.
Liberal Studies: DeAnna Rae Todt – B.A.
Management: Lori L. Dinquel – B.A. (Peoria), Hye Jeong Chang – B.A.
Management Information Systems: Michael E. Ackley – M.S.
Mathematical Sciences: Donald William Cantrall – B.A.
Philosophy: Norman Michael Brennen – B.A.
Political Science: Jana R. Smith – B.A., Gerald Scott Allen – M.A.
Psychology: Sandra Lynn Hurtubise – B.A.
Public Administration: Judy Kay Guenseth – M.P.A., Barbara E. Ferrara, D.P.A.
Public Affairs Reporting: Hannah Claire Hess – M.A.
Public Health: Alexander Cherey Zingher – M.P.H.
Social Work: Denise Lynette Lilley – B.S.W.
Sociology/Anthropology: McKenna Christine Blair – B.A.
Teacher Leadership: Michael L. Edwards – M.A.
Visual Arts: Joel Grayson Walter – B.A.
A number of events are planned for graduates, their families and guests, beginning with a reception for Peoria-area students on Friday, May 6. Separate brunches for CAP Honors graduates and online degree graduates are scheduled for Saturday morning, May 14.
Admission to some commencement events is by invitation only. Updated information, including a complete list of events, is available from the commencement website at www.uis.edu/commencement/.
The ceremony will be webcast live at www.uis.edu/technology/uislive.html. DVDs ($25) can also be ordered from the Office of Electronic Media, phone 217/206-6799.
For more information, go to the UIS Commencement website at www.uis.edu/commencement/.