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KU graduates more than 600 at commencement ceremony

Dec. 15, 2012

Fall 2012 commencement speaker Chevon OcasioKUTZTOWN, PA - Kutztown University of Pennsylvania held its fall commencement ceremonies earlier this morning in the O'Pake Fieldhouse on-campus. More than 600 baccalaureate and master's degree candidates processed for the Colleges of Education, Business, Visual & Performing Arts, and Liberal Arts & Sciences.

University president Dr. F. Javier Cevallos presided at the ceremony. Graduate student remarks were provided by Gregory Brooks, who received a Master of Education in secondary education and instruction. Undergraduate remarks were provided by Chevon Lyne Ocasio, who earned a Bachelor of Science in business administration. In keeping with tradition, a member of the KU faculty addressed the graduates - assistant professor of management, Dr. Daniel S. Benson spoke at the ceremony.

Gregory Brooks earned a Master of Education in secondary education and instruction. In 2010, he received a bachelor's in physics also from KU. Outside of his studies, Mr. Brooks is an assistant coach for the university's rugby club and serves as the team's academic advisor. Mr. Brooks' student teaching experience is extensive, and he has taught AP Physics, College Prep Physics and Physical Science Investigations. During his undergraduate career at KU, Mr. Brooks worked as a volunteer during move-in weekend, at optimist club events and also volunteered with the university/Borough of Kutztown neighborhood watch, KUBoK. He is dedicated to helping other students with their academic success and has worked as a peer tutor. Following graduation, Mr. Brooks is looking forward to beginning his teaching career.

Chevon Lyne Ocasio earned a Bachelor of Science in business administration. Ms. Ocasio began her undergraduate education at Kutztown University in 2011, after graduating from Reading Area Community College, with an associate degree in business administration. During her time at KU, Ms. Ocasio held several campus and community leadership positions, including a reign as president and vice president of the Allies of KU. Ms. Ocasio also served as the Lehigh Valley Regional Chairperson for the Pennsylvania Student Equality Coalition and was a member of the Feminist Majority Leadership Alliance through which she performed in The Vagina Monologues. She has worked as a supplemental instructor for the business statistics course and has volunteered at several KU events, most notably at the Special Olympics, the Science Olympiad and with Friend Inc. A resident of Reading, Pa., Ms. Ocasio has recently completed the H&R Block Income Tax Course and is looking forward to a career in finance.

Dr. Dan S. Benson, associate professor of management, has been with Kutztown University for 32 years. A committed life-long learner, Benson received his MBA from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and received doctorate from Temple University in Higher Educational Leadership. Benson has extensive experience working in administration and university governance. He is acting chair of the Professional Studies department and, for 20 years, served as chair of the Management Department. He has served as the chair of the University Strategic Planning and Resources committee and also chaired the College of Business Strategic Planning Committee. For three years, he served as KU's MBA coordinator and, for two years, managed the College of Business International Exchange Program. Benson is also active in endeavors outside of teaching; attending and presenting at regional and national conferences. He helped develop and lead the KU American Business Immersion Program from 2006-2008, which exposed MBA students from India to various American businesses.

Also in attendance was the family of Christopher M. Cole, a KU student who died in a motorcycle accident in 2008. Family members received an honorary degree awarded posthumously.