Athens, Ga. – About 2,200 University of Georgia students will be eligible to receive degrees at UGA’s 2009 fall semester commencement ceremonies Dec. 18 in Stegeman Coliseum.
Approximately 1,700 seniors will be eligible to participate in the ceremony for undergraduates at 9:30 a.m. U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates will be the speaker. Before entering his present post, Gates was the president of Texas A&M University, the nation’s seventh largest university. Prior to assuming the Texas A&M presidency, on Aug. 1, 2002, he served as interim dean of the George Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M from 1999 to 2001.
An estimated 524 candidates for master’s, doctoral and specialist in education degrees are eligible to participate in the graduate ceremony at 2:30 p.m. Professor Dorinda Dallmeyer, former associate director of the School of Law’s Dean Rusk Center – International, Comparative and Graduate Legal Studies and director of the College of Environment and Design’s Environmental Ethics Certificate Program, will speak.
The student speaker for the undergraduate ceremony will be Bobby Rowe of Roswell, who will graduate with a bachelor of business administration degree in management. A Hope Scholar, Rowe is a member of UGA HEROs, the university’s largest student philanthropy, and a member of the Catholic Student Association. He also volunteers with Oasis Catolico as a tutor for Hispanic children from the Athens community.
During the undergraduate ceremony, two students will be recognized as First Honor Graduates for having maintained a perfect 4.0 grade point average. They are Michelle Constance Dowst of Kennesaw and Joseph Reuben Jones of Commerce.
Because Dec. 18 is a Friday, a normal workday, some of the usual parking patterns on South Campus near the coliseum will be adjusted. The South Parking Deck (zone S-11) and Carlton Street Deck (zone S-15) will be open at no charge for visitors and guests attending commencement. The Hoke Smith lot (S-12) will be reserved for handicapped guests with proper handicapped placards. The McPhaul Center lot (S-10) will be reserved for members of the commencement platform party.
As announced previously, tickets will be required for attendance at the undergraduate ceremony, with six offered to each graduating student.
Both the undergraduate and graduate commencement ceremonies will be broadcast live on UGA’s cable television station, channel 15 on the Charter cable system and University Cablevision, in Masters Hall at the Georgia Center for Continuing Education Conference Center and Hotel and in the Tate Student Center Theater. It also will be streamed in a webcast accessible via a link on UGA’s Web site, www.uga.edu.