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Gonzaga to Graduate 10th-Straight Record Large Class in 119th Commencement May 11-13

Gonzaga University commencement caps and gowns

For the first time, GU graduates will don caps and gowns made from 40,000 recycled plastic bottles during commencement ceremonies May 11-13. 2011 photo by Zack Berlat

Law School & Graduate Ceremonies May 12,
Undergraduate Ceremony May 13

SPOKANE, Wash. – For the 10th consecutive year, Gonzaga University will graduate its largest class ever during its 119th commencement exercises May 11-13. Gonzaga officials expects to confer a total of 2,221 undergraduate, graduate and law degrees, a dozen more than its previous record-largest class of 2,209 graduates in 2011.

Gonzaga expects to confer 1,147 bachelor degrees (up 45; 1,102 in 2011), 887 master degrees (off 39; 926 in 2011), 19 doctorates (same as 2011), and 168 law degrees (up 6; 162 in 2011), University officials said Wednesday, May 2. Figures represent best estimates.

Commencement weekend marks the official start of Gonzaga’s yearlong 125th Anniversary celebration. Gonzaga University School of Law will launch its Centennial Anniversary with a Sept. 20 lecture by author Scott Turow. Law School Commencement begins at 9:30 a.m., Saturday, May 12, followed by Graduate Commencement at 5 p.m.; both events will be in the McCarthey Athletic Center on campus. Senior Commencement, featuring Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu as keynote speaker, begins at 10 a.m. at the Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena. Gonzaga will broadcast the Most Rev. Tutu’s keynote address live via Internet video stream at the following link for home computers, tablets or smart phones. View this release for details on the broadcast of Archbishop Tutu’s talk, including system requirements.

For the first time, GU graduates will don caps and gowns made from 40,000 recycled plastic bottles. Read the story.

Gonzaga’s Social Justice Missioning Ceremony, when Gonzaga honors graduates committing to a period of volunteer service work (such as Peace Corps or Jesuit Volunteer Corps), 4 p.m., May 11 in University Chapel (3rd floor, College Hall).


ROTC COMMISSIONING CEREMONY: 5:15 p.m., May 11, St. Aloysius Church. The keynote speaker will be Lt. Col. Gregory Jacobsen, professor of military science, at (509) 313-6511.

SCHOOL OF LAW BACCALAUREATE MASS: 6 p.m., May 11 in University Chapel (third floor of College Hall). For more information, contact Susan Harmon at (509) 313-3700 or e-mail.

SENIOR DESSERT SOCIAL: 7-10 p.m., May 11 at Gonzaga’s off-campus Bozarth Mansion and Retreat Center. All undergraduate faculty, Gonzaga seniors and their parents are invited.

LAW SCHOOL COMMENCEMENT: 9:30 a.m. (academic procession begins at 9:15 a.m.), May 12, McCarthey Athletic Center. Gonzaga alumna and Washington state Supreme Court Justice Debra Stephens (undergraduate ’87, Law School ’93) will be the keynote speaker. John E. Clute, former Gonzaga Law School dean and GU Law alumnus (’60), will receive the 2012 Gonzaga Law Medal (posthumously). A social at the Law School will follow the ceremony. For more information, contact Susan Harmon at the Law School at (509) 313-3700 or via e-mail.

PRESIDENTIAL RECEPTION AND TOAST TO SENIORS: 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., May 12, The Martin Centre Fieldhouse; light refreshments.

UNDERGRADUATE, GRADUATE BACCALAUREATE MASS: 1:30 p.m., May 12, McCarthey Athletic Center (doors open at 12:15 p.m.). Baccalaureate Mass is a central part of commencement. People of all faith traditions are cordially invited. Most Rev. Blase Cupich, Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Spokane, will be the principal celebrant.

GRADUATE COMMENCEMENT: 5 p.m. (academic procession begins at 4:40 p.m.), May 12, McCarthey Athletic Center. A social will follow (for graduates and families) on The Martin Centre’s South Lawn. Maryknoll Lay Missioner and Gonzaga (undergraduate and master’s) alumna Marjorie Humphrey will deliver the keynote address and receive the DeSmet Medal, Gonzaga’s highest honor.

SENIOR COMMENCEMENT: 10 a.m. (academic procession starts at 9:35 a.m.), May 13, Spokane Veterans’ Memorial Arena. Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu will be the keynote speaker. Gonzaga President Thayne McCulloh will present Most Rev. Tutu with an honorary Doctor of Laws degree. The ceremony is expected to end at approximately 1 p.m. Very Rev. Patrick J. Lee, S.J., provincial of the Oregon Province of the Society of Jesus, will offer the benediction. A social for graduates and families follows in The Martin Centre Fieldhouse at GU. Arena parking: $5.

Click the following link for more information on Gonzaga’s Commencement Weekend.

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