And the Commencement Speaker Is…
U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder
U.S. Attorney General Eric H. Holder, Jr., will deliver the 2010 Commencement address at the University’s 137th Commencement exercises on Sunday, May 16. Holder’s scheduled appearance, announced by BU President Robert A.Brown to more than 4,000 seniors at this morning’s Senior Breakfast, marks the first time a standing U.S. attorney general has addressed the University’s graduating classes.
Holder was deputy attorney general under President Bill Clinton and was an associate judge of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia under President Ronald Reagan. He will receive an honorary Doctor of Laws.
Holder will also give the School of Law’s convocation address at Agganis Arena, just hours before addressing all seniors.
A buzz hummed through the crowd after Brown announced the Commencement speaker and Holder’s picture flashed across the projection screen.
Brown also revealed that this year’s Commencement Day Baccalaureate speaker will be Wafaa El-Sadr, a physician, a professor, and director of the International Center for AIDS Care and Treatment Programs and the Global Health Initiative at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. El-Sadr, a native of Egypt, is known for her work with tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS programs at the Harlem Hospital Center and in developing nations. She will receive an honorary Doctor of Science.
Brown also named the other honorary degree recipients and the winners of the University’s highest teaching awards, the Metcalf Cup and Prize and Awards for Teaching Excellence.
The honorary degree recipients are:
Edward Albee, playwright and Pulitzer winner, Doctor of Letters.
William T. Coleman, Jr., senior partner and senior counselor in the international firm O’Melveny & Myers, who served under six U.S. presidents, Doctor of Laws.
Osamu Shimomura, winner of the 2008 Nobel Prize in Chemistry and a BU School of Medicine professor emeritus, Doctor of Science.
The 2010 Metcalf Cup and Prize, the University’s highest teaching honor, will be given to James G. McDaniel, a College of Engineering associate professor of mechanical engineering and associate chair of undergraduate studies in mechanical engineering.
Sandra Nicolucci, a College of Fine Arts associate professor of music education, will receive a Metcalf Award.
John P. Caradonna, an associate professor of chemistry and director of undergraduate studies in the College of Arts & Sciences, will also receive a Metcalf Award.
BU Today will profile all three Metcalf recipients starting Monday, so check back for in-depth stories about the awarding-winning professors.
Brown ticked off a quick history of what’s happened during the seniors’ tenure at BU — from the construction of StuVi2 and a change in the student guest policy to the revamping of Commonwealth Avenue and the recent financial crisis. Through it all, seniors stuck together.
“You are one of the classes with the highest retention rates in BU history,” Brown said.
Three seniors were recognized for their accomplishments. Ariana Sherman (CAS’10) and Colleen Huysman (COM’10) received Commitment to Service Awards, and Natasha Gacinski (CAS’10) received a Community Service Award. And Emily Pallotta (SMG’10) earned the Alumni Association’s Student Leader Award.
Referring to the seniors’ many athletic, academic, and service accomplishments, Brown said: “I hope your pride in the University comes from a whole lot of different sources.”
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