Spring Honors Convocation

by President Catanese

The annual Spring Honors Convocation is one of my favorite awards events. In part, it makes me feel good because of tradition. Every year, there’s Bob Shearer playing a beautiful classical piece on the piano and an invocation from Rev. Darice Dawson or Fr. Doug Bailey.

I feel an almost paternal pride in seeing achieving students with shining faces come up on stage—often more than once—to receive well-deserved honors. I know that so much hard work and sacrifice has gone into developing the potential and creating the success of each young individual.

This event and commencement are academic rituals that truly epitomize the year and the best efforts of all of us.

And I shake the hands of many students at both events, of course. In fact, I saw Cristina Mazzone, daughter of Pete Mazzone, three times. She won a Best in Showcase Design Award at the Northrop Grumman Student Design Showcase, picked up a department of biological sciences top senior award at Honors Convocation, and graduated with honors on May 7.

Then there was Dominic Casali who took home the Donald R. Mason Award as the outstanding senior in the department of chemical engineering. Then at commencement he received faculty honors for his 4.0.

I’m always especially proud of our Faculty Excellence Award winners as the competition is tremendous. Because there is no such a thing as too much acknowledgement, I want to congratulate the recipients once again. Big cheers go to Dr. James Brenner for the Kerry Bruce Clark Award for Excellence in Teaching; to Dr. Marcus Hohlmann for the Award for Excellence in Research; and to Clayton Baum, for the Andrew W. Revay Jr. Award for Excellence in Service.

As Vince Lombardi said, “It is time for us all to stand and cheer for the doer, the achiever, the one who recognizes the challenge and does something about it.”

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