Mother's Day Weekend, Six commencements

May 16, 2012

Mothers DaySaint Leo University hosted five commencement ceremonies at teaching locations in Florida and another ceremony in South Carolina during the two-day period from Friday, May 11, through Saturday, May 12. As the Mother’s Day holiday fell on Sunday, May 13, scores of families in the Saint Leo community were celebrating two occasions over the weekend.

Key West, FL
Graduates in Key West gathered Friday evening at Florida Keys Community College, at the southern tip of the Sunshine State. The guest commencement speaker was Dr. B. Tim Lowder, a faculty member who formerly taught at Saint Leo’s Key West location. Dr. Lowder is now assistant professor of business administration at University Campus, and also serves as chair of the Department of Business Administration and Management at the Donald R. Tapia School of Business. Graduates earned the Associate of Arts, Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Arts, and Master of Business Administration degrees.

Lake City, FL
Graduates and their families gathered Friday evening at Florida Gateway College to hear guest commencement speaker Elizabeth Porter, who represents Lake City and surrounding areas in the Florida House of Representatives. The local class of 2012 was comprised largely of undergraduates who had earned the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science, and Bachelor of Applied Science degree at the undergraduate degree level. Several graduate degrees were also conferred: the Master of Business Administration, the Master of Science, and the Master of Education degrees.

Madison, FL
Graduates from Saint Leo’s Madison teaching location gathered at North Florida Community College Saturday morning for the 2012 commencement. Madison County School Superintendent Lou Miller addressed the class, which included 11 future elementary school teachers. In addition to Bachelor of Arts degree recipients, the commencement ceremony also recognized the accomplishments of graduate students who had earned the Master of Education degree and Master of Business Administration degree.

Ocala, FL
The Queen of Peace Catholic Church was the site of the Saturday noon commencement ceremony for Saint Leo students from the Ocala area. The guest commencement speaker was Dr. James D. Henningsen, president of the College of Central Florida, which hosts the Saint Leo Ocala Center. New alumni had earned degrees at both the undergraduate and graduate levels: the Bachelor of Arts, the Bachelor of Science, the Master of Science, the Master of Business Administration, the Master of Education, and the Education Specialist degrees were awarded.

Gainesville, FL
Saint Leo University graduates and their families gathered in the Curtis M. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts on the campus of the University of Florida early Saturday evening. The guest commencement speaker was Shawn Salamida, who serves as president and chief executive officer of Partnership for Strong Families, a community agency that provides a wide range of child welfare services for 13 counties in North and Central Florida. The class of 2012 included students who had earned the Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees, as well as individuals who had earned the Master of Science, Master of Education, and Master of Business Administration degrees.

Sumter, SC
Graduates from Saint Leo’s Shaw Air Force Base and North Charleston facilities in South Carolina gathered Saturday afternoon for a local commencement at Sumter First Church of the Nazarene. Graduates had earned degrees including the Associate of Arts, Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Arts, and Master of Business Administration. Sumter County Sheriff Anthony Dennis ’91 served as guest commencement speaker, and welcomed the new graduates to the ranks of Saint Leo University alumni.