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Cook Inspires Graduates At May Commencement

Photos: Keith Boyer, Jamie Empfield

IUP graduates enjoying the traditional “cap toss.” Photo: Jamie Empfield

A total of 1,603 students received degrees at IUP’s commencement ceremonies on May 3. Robert E. Cook, the benefactor of IUP’s Cook Honors College, served as the commencement keynote speaker in honor of the achievement of ten graduating classes from the Cook Honors College. Cook is a 1964 graduate of IUP and a native of Altoona.

Robert E. Cook speaking at Commencement. Photo: Keith BoyerIn his remarks, Cook (at right) recognized that “IUP offers the finest academic training in the United States. No other school in the country does what IUP does, as well as it does, for so little money. Having IUP stamped on your class ring is becoming a big asset, and it will become bigger.” The student commencement speaker was Kali Jean Rosenberger of Pittsburgh, a Spanish and English education major.

The breakdown of degrees was 1,238 bachelor’s degrees, 331 master’s degrees, 29 doctoral degrees, and five associate degrees. Of the bachelor’s degree graduates, 623 qualified for Latin honors with grade-point averages of 3.25 or higher. Thirty-six undergraduate students completed their academic career with perfect 4.0 grade-point averages. Despite the rain, the mood was celebratory, with graduates enjoying the traditional “cap toss” after receiving their degrees. All graduates were called by name to the stage and received special diploma covers during the ceremony. This initiative, begun last year, was instituted by President Atwater.

Keith Miller at Commencement. Photo: Jamie EmpfieldKeith Miller (left), a graduate from Johnsonburg, did not let the rain keep him from taking a few minutes to reflect on the day after the graduates had cleared the field.