Bookmark and Share

KUTZTOWN UNIVERSITY HOLDS SPRING COMMENCEMENT EXERCISES MAY 18

May 9, 2013 | updated May 18, 2013

KUTZTOWN, Pa. - Kutztown University of Pennsylvania held its spring commencement ceremonies on Saturday, May 18. More than 1,100 undergraduate and graduate students participated.

The ceremony for both undergraduate and graduate classes of the Colleges of Education and Business was held at 9 a.m. in the O'Pake Fieldhouse. The undergraduate and graduate classes of the Colleges of Liberal Arts & Sciences and Visual & Performing Arts held its ceremonies at 2 p.m., also in the O'Pake Fieldhouse.

The commencement ceremonies were broadcast online through Ustream.tv, an interactive broadcast platform, enabling the families and friends of the graduates to view the ceremony live through a web connection. Commencement Coverage

University President Dr. F. Javier Cevallos presided at both ceremonies. In keeping with tradition, members of the KU faculty addressed the graduates. Deborah Johnson, assistant professor of elementary education, spoke at the education/business ceremony. Matthew Daub, professor of fine arts, spoke at the liberal arts and science/visual and performing arts ceremony. The speakers are selected based on nominations submitted by the senior class.

For the morning ceremony, graduate student remarks were provided by Joseph P. Hohman, who received his master's degree in student affairs in higher education. Undergraduate remarks were provided by Nicole R. Hawxhurst, who received her bachelor's degree in marketing.

For the afternoon ceremony, graduate student remarks were provided by Michelle Childs-Healy, who received her master's degree in social work. Undergraduate remarks were provided by Ahmed O. Awadallah, who received his bachelor's degree in political science. At the afternoon ceremony, Philadelphia-native Judge Arenda L. Wright Allen '82 received a Doctor of Public Service, doctor beneficiorum publicorum, honoris causa, for her exceptional contributions to justice throughout a distinguished career.

Kutztown-resident Joseph Hohman earned a Master of Education in Student Affairs in Higher Education. He received his Bachelor of Arts in Speech Communication from KU and held several campus and community positions, including president and treasurer of Allies of Kutztown University. Additionally, he served as president of the Graduate Student Association. Mr. Hohman has experience in student affairs and has worked as a graduate supervisor in the McFarland Student Union as well as a graduate assistant in the Office of Student Involvement. Currently, he is a graduate assistant for America Reads and America Counts, where he is a coordinator who recruits, supervises and trains mentors and tutors for in-school and after school programs. Last year, he was a graduate student representative for the Commission on Human Diversity. In the spring of 2009, Mr. Hohman was awarded both the Housing and Residential Services Allies Award and the Scholars in Service to Pennsylvania AmeriCorps Education Award.

Allentown-native Nicole Hawxhurst graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a major in Marketing and a concentration in Advertising. Throughout her academic career, she held several important professional development positions and recently served as the student representative to the Council of Trustees and vice president of Student Government Board (SGB). Previously, she held the marketing chair and College of Business dean's liaison positions on SGB. Outside of her studies, Ms. Hawxhurst is also president and co-founder of iLEAD (Innovation, Leadership, Entrepreneurship, and the Development of Careers), vice president of community service for the American Marketing Association, a member of the American Advertising Federation and a Model United Nations delegate. In addition, she served as a volunteer for special KU events and programs, including Safety Week, Grad Fest and the "Who's Who" search committee. Following graduation, Ms. Hawxhurst will attend the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City, where she will study Fashion Merchandising Management.

Wyncote, Pa.-resident Deborah Johnson, assistant professor of Elementary Education, began her career at KU as an urban initiatives coordinator and diversity consultant. Today, she teaches a wide variety of courses for the College of Education. During her time at Kutztown, she has given presentations at several conferences, including the Pennsylvania State Education Association, the Pa. Council of Teachers of English, the Universal Conference for Diversity and the Keystone State Reading Association. Professor Johnson also has considerable experience serving on committees; she holds positions on the Recruitment and Retention committee for the College of Education, the Frederick Douglass Institute Committee and the Recruitment, Retention and Orientation Program for Inner City Students. She has received the Distinguished Service Award from the KU Commission on the Status of Minorities, a certificate of appreciation from the Reading School District and the Walt Disney World Teacher of the Year Award. Recently, she served as a reviewer for SAGE publications, submitted a short story for publication and gave a lecture to KU students on the best pedagogical methods and skills for teaching in an urban environment.

Bethlehem-resident Michelle Childs-Healy graduated with a Master of Social Work degree. In 1993, she graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from KU. During her graduate studies, she was employed part-time as an intake coordinator for Kathleen Coughlin, LSW & Associates, Bethlehem, Pa., where she provided direct interventions to children and families. Prior to enrolling at Kutztown, she was employed by KidsPeace in a variety of positions. Ms. Childs-Healy has held internships with both Lehigh County Children and Youth and Communities in Schools. Both internships utilized her expertise in conflict resolution, case management and crisis intervention. Additionally, her service to the university is extensive. She has served as president of the Phi Alpha National Honor Society for Social Workers, supervised volunteers at social work events, oversaw pro-context students and served as secretary of professional development meetings for the Department of Social Work.

Coplay, Pa.-resident Ahmed Awadallah graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and minors in Economics and International Studies. A native of Egypt, Mr. Awadallah has been highly involved with university activities. At KU, he served as treasurer for the Student Government Board and student body representative for four separate committees, was president of the International Student Organization and served as a delegate for the Harvard World Model United Nations in Vancouver, Canada and Melbourne, Australia. In summer 2012, Mr. Awadallah was selected to intern with the Center for Popular Democracy in New York City and with ‘The Common Good,' a non-profit, non-partisan organization that strives to inspire democratic participation. He has been employed as a program assistant by KU's Office of Tutoring Services, as a building assistant for the McFarland Student Union and as a summer conference assistant by the Office of Conference Services. In 2010, when Mr. Awadallah was studying Electromechanical Technology at Northampton Community College, he was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship. Additionally, he has been the recipient of three Kutztown University scholarships. Following graduation, he plans to attend the London School of Economics.

Matthew Daub's watercolor paintings and drawings have been widely exhibited throughout the United States for over three decades. He has had more than twenty one-person exhibitions at galleries and museums in New York, Chicago and elsewhere. Professor Daub's works have been included in numerous invitational exhibitions at prestigious institutions such as The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The American Academy of Arts and Letters, The National Academy of Design and The Bronx Museum of the Arts. He is the director of Arts Sojourn, an Italian travel group, and a contributing writer for Professional Artist magazine. In 2010, one of his articles received a Silver Folio Award for editorial excellence in the magazine publishing industry. He is represented by ACA Galleries in NYC and will have his second one-person show at that gallery in the fall, followed by a one-person exhibition at the Allentown Museum in 2013 - 2014. Daub has been a professor of Fine Arts at KU since 1987. He received the Chambliss Award for Research in 2011.