Date of Press Release: May 1, 2012
The University of Alaska Southeast Juneau campus holds its 41st annual commencement ceremony on Sunday, May 6 at 2 p.m. at the Charles Gamble Jr.-Donald Sperl Joint Use Facility, 12300 Mendenhall Loop Road (UAS Rec Center). The public is invited to join the celebration.
UA is honoring graduates from Summer and Fall 2011 and Spring 2012. Please note, parking at the Rec Center is limited. Auke Lake Way (the prior front entrance to the UAS Auke Lake Campus) is permanently closed to vehicular traffic. Please use the new main north Back Loop road entrance to park on campus. Shuttle bus service will be available to and from the Rec Center before and after the ceremony. The event is simulcast on UATV Cable Channel 11 and live streamed at http://uatv.alaska.edu/.
A total of 620 candidates are scheduled to receive Masters, Bachelors and Associates degrees as well as certificates and occupational endorsements from the Juneau, Ketchikan and Sitka UAS campuses. Five-hundred twenty-nine degrees, certificates and endorsement will go to Juneau graduates.
Twenty-four states are represented in this year’s group of graduates, 87 percent are from Alaska.
Mayor Bruce M. Botelho is Commencement Speaker. He is completing his final term (three consecutive and one term in 1988-1991) as mayor of Juneau, Alaska’s capital city. Mayor Botelho served as Attorney General for the State of Alaska from 1994-2002. He is very active in community and civic affairs.
Crystal Rogers is the Student Speaker. Crystal is receiving her Bachelor of Liberal Arts degree in Independent Design, focusing on the art, language, government and history of indigenous and Western societies in Alaska, with a minor in Tlingit.
“Crystal has consistently done twice as much work as is required,” said Alice Taff, Research Assistant Professor of Alaska Native Languages. “She is the leading Tlingit language learner among her cohort of learners. An excellent public speaker, showing respect to each sector of the UAS community in the Tlingit way, Crystal will give a meaningful, memorable commencement address.”
John Borbridge Jr. will receive an Honorary Doctorate of Laws degree. John Borbridge Jr. is an elder, statesman and history maker. In 1965, after a decade of positively influencing the lives of students as a teacher and a coach at Sheldon Jackson High School in Sitka and Juneau-Douglas High School in Juneau, Borbridge began a new chapter in the battle for Alaska Native land rights.
He was designated by Tlingit leaders to speak and work on their behalf in Washington D.C. as the first president of the Central Council Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska. At the same time he served as vice president, chairman of the board and lobbyist for the Alaska Federation of Natives. Borbridge was instrumental in the 1971 passage of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act that cleared land titles to make way for the Alaska Pipeline. The settlement was for nearly $1 billlion and 44 million acres of land. ANCSA led to the formation of Alaska Native Corporations.
Outstanding Graduates: There are a total of sixteen Outstanding Graduates selected by faculty from the Schools of Arts and Sciences, Management and Career Education. To read Outstanding graduate profiles and see photos, please see the website at uas.alaska.edu/celebrating-grads
Reception and Art Exhibit
The commencement ceremony is immediately followed by a catered reception in the Mourant Cafeteria. Across from the cafeteria in the Egan Building is an exhibit of art by graduating Bachelor of Arts in Art students in the Glacier View Room from 4-6 p.m. Light refreshments will be served.
The Wooch.een club is hosting the annual Alaska Native Graduation Celebration at DIPAC at 6 p.m.