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REF NO.: 204

SUBJECT: Memorial University to hold spring convocation ceremonies next week
DATE: May 20, 2011

More than 2,000 degrees will be awarded at Memorial University’s annual spring convocation at the St. John’s Arts and Culture Centre next week. There will be eight sessions of convocation from May 24-27, 2011. In addition, remarkable individuals from the worlds of the arts, public service and academia will be awarded honorary degrees during the convocation ceremonies.
The honourees include molecular biologist Dr. Sidney Altman; bandleader and public relations specialist Edsel Bonnell; fisherman and community leader Donald Best; scientist E. David Morgan; musician and composer Alexander (Sandy) Morris; literature and history specialist Patrick O’Flaherty; philanthropist Elinor Gill Ratcliffe; and author John Ralston Saul.
Humanitarian Stephen Lewis received an honorary doctor of laws degree on May 13 during Grenfell Campus, Memorial University of Newfoundland’s spring convocation session. Dr. Lewis was to receive the degree at convocation in Corner Brook last year but was absent due to illness.
Honorary degree recipients are chosen from nominations from the public by the Senate, the university’s academic governing body, after a careful
examination of the grounds for their nomination. The honorary doctorate degree
 
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is designed to recognize extraordinary contribution to society or exceptional intellectual or artistic achievement.                                                   
The awarding of honorary doctorates, an important feature of Memorial’s convocation, serves to celebrate both the individual and the university, as well as to inspire graduates, their families and guests.
Memorial’s President and Vice-Chancellor Dr. Gary Kachanoski will deliver his report during the first convocation session of each day from May 24-27. The second session of each day will see members of Memorial’s senior administration speak. Kent Decker, vice-president (administration and finance) will speak on Tuesday, May 24, at 7:30 p.m.; Dr. Christopher Loomis, vice-president (research), will speak on Wednesday, May 25, at 3 p.m.; Dr. Evan Simpson, vice-president (academic) pro tempore, will speak on Thursday, May 26, at 3 p.m.; and Dr. Rob Shea, dean of Student Affairs and Services pro tempore, will speak on Friday, May 27, at 3 p.m.
The university is also developing a convocation supplement in collaboration with The Telegram. The May 28 feature — likely to be a memorable keepsake for graduates and their families – will feature the names of the graduates together with stories on the outstanding achievements of some graduates.
For further information about convocation, please visit www.mun.ca/convocation/.
Memorial’s spring convocation is also being broadcast live on the web. The broadcast will be available for viewing at www.mun.ca during each convocation session.  

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