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Commencement 2011- SU's 157th and SUNY-ESF's 114th exercises May 15

May 11, 2011

Sara Miller
(315) 443-9038

Syracuse University, in its 157th Commencement, will celebrate the graduation of 5,459 degree candidates on Sunday, May 15, in the Carrier Dome. The SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry (SUNY-ESF), in its 114th Commencement exercises, will confer 582 degrees at the ceremony. SUNY-ESF is also celebrating the institution’s centennial anniversary this year.

Additionally, Syracuse University College of Law is joining SU and SUNY-ESF in celebrating Commencement in the Carrier Dome. The College of Law will confer 194 juris doctor degrees.

Commencement exercises will begin at 9:30 a.m., with class, school and college marshals leading degree candidates into the Carrier Dome.

Nancy Weatherly Sharp, professor emerita of newspaper journalism in the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, will serve as mace bearer and head the academic procession that includes University Marshal Sandra N. Hurd, SU associate provost for academic programs, and professor of law and public policy in the Whitman School of Management; Associate University Marshal Shiu-Kai Chin, Laura J. and L. Douglas Meredith Professor for Teaching Excellence and professor of electrical engineering and computer science in the L.C. Smith College of Engineering and Computer Science; the newly named emeriti faculty; current faculty; administrators; academic deans; members of the Board of Trustees; and the ROTC Color Guard. 

The Chancellor’s party will include SU Chancellor and President Nancy Cantor; SUNY-ESF President Cornelius B. Murphy Jr.; Commencement speaker J. Craig Venter; the honorary degree recipients and their sponsors; SU Board of Trustees Chairman Richard L. Thompson G‘67; SUNY-ESF Board of Trustees Chairman William L. McGarry Jr.; and Lawrence D. Bashe ’66, G’68, president of the SU Alumni Association. 

SU Vice Chancellor and Provost Eric F. Spina will preside. The Rev. Tiffany L. Steinwert, dean of Hendricks Chapel, will deliver the invocation, and David Artz, a graduating senior who will receive a bachelor’s degree in vocal performance from the College of Visual and Performing Arts, will sing the national anthem. Cantor, Murphy and Bashe will offer greetings. 

Syracuse University Scholar Teresa M. Soldner, a triple major in chemistry, Middle Eastern studies and international relations in The College of Arts and Sciences, will speak, and Venter’s address will follow. 

Cantor and Spina will confer honorary degrees upon Venter, SU Board of Trustees Chairman Emeritus Trustee John H. Chapple ’75, Nicholas M. Donofrio G’71, Jessie C. Gruman, Ei-ichi Negishi and Gerardine Wurzburg. 

Cantor and Murphy will then confer doctoral degrees upon SU and SUNY-ESF candidates, followed by the conferral of master’s degrees and certificates of advanced study. 

Spina will recognize SU Class of 2011 Marshals Justin Michael Cole, a policy studies, economics and political science triple major in The College of Arts and Sciences, and Katherine L. Lewinski, a double major in international relations and policy studies in The College of Arts and Sciences, along with the University Scholars and the SUNY-ESF Scholars. 

Cantor and Murphy will then confer associate and baccalaureate degrees. 

Jill Morgan Brenner, a graduating senior who will receive a bachelor’s degree in vocal performance from the College of Visual and Performing Arts, will conclude the ceremony with the singing of the alma mater. 

The SU Brass Ensemble, under the direction of James T. Spencer, professor of chemistry in The College of Arts and Sciences, will provide processional music. W. John Hottenstein, professor emeritus of television, radio and film in the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, will be the announcer. 

Viewing details:

J. Craig Venter, a world-renowned scientist regarded as one of the most influential people in the world for his efforts to decode the human genome, will deliver the Commencement address to the 2011 graduates of Syracuse University, the College of Law and SUNY-ESF during Commencement exercises on Sunday, May 15, in the Carrier Dome. The ceremony begins at 9:30 a.m.

Members of the public wishing to attend can enter the Dome through Gates A, B, F, G, H, J, K, L, M, N and P. Seating will be restricted to designated areas in the upper levels of the Dome. Space permitting, free parking is available at: parking lots west of the Carrier Dome; University Avenue Garage (accessed by East Adams and Harrison streets; hours 7 a.m.-6 p.m.), with shuttle service available; Manley Field House, with shuttle bus service to the Carrier Dome. Handicapped parking is at Manley Field House with shuttle (accessible) to the Carrier Dome. For a complete map of available campus parking lots and garages, see

WEBCAST:  The ceremony is being webcast live at The link will be active beginning at 9:30 a.m. Sunday, and viewers will need flash video player to watch the live webcast. Flash player can be downloaded for free at

TELEVISION: WSYR-TV digital 9.2 will carry the majority of the Commencement ceremony, including Venter’s speech, live beginning at 9:30 a.m.

For full information on Commencement, visit

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