FAU Celebrates Spring 2017 Commencement

Florida Atlantic University will confer more than 3,230 degrees today and tomorrow during six commencement ceremonies in the Carole and Barry Kaye Performing Arts Auditorium.

By kelsie weekes | 5/4/2017

Florida Atlantic University will confer more than 3,230 degrees today and tomorrow during six commencement ceremonies in the Carole and Barry Kaye Performing Arts Auditorium, 777 Glades Road, Boca Raton campus. The new graduates will join more than 155,330 alumni who have graduated from FAU since the University opened its doors in 1964.

“I continue to be impressed with the accomplishments of  Florida Atlantic University students,” said FAU President John Kelly. “These graduates have much to be proud of, and I join their families and friends in congratulating them on this major milestone.”

The Link Foundation will receive the FAU Board of Trustees Service Award on Thursday, May 4 at 1 p.m. Marilyn Link, who will be accepting the award, previously served as secretary, treasurer and trustee of the Link Foundation, an organization founded by her brother, Edwin A. Link, that is dedicated to the advancement of oceanographic, simulation, aerospace and energy research. Since its inception, the Link Foundation has awarded nearly $15 million in grants to colleges, universities and other nonprofit organizations. Link’s brother also was a co-founder of FAU’s Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute, which the Link Foundation has generously supported through fellowships and internships.

Bobby Campbell will receive an honorary doctoral degree on Thursday, May 4 at 5 p.m. Campbell is the founder and CEO of BBC International, one of the leading children’s and athletic footwear design and sourcing companies in the world. He serves on the board of trustees for the Boca Raton Regional Hospital Foundation and the board of directors for the Boca Raton Historical Society and the ARC of Palm Beach County. He also sits on the executive boards of the American Apparel and Footwear Association, Fashion Footwear Association of New York and the Footwear Distributors and Retailers of America. In 2003, Campbell was elected into the Footwear Industry Hall of Fame. In April 2016, Campbell and his wife, Barbara, named the Bobby and Barbara Campbell Academic Success Center within the Schmidt Family Complex for Academic and Athletic Excellence.

Arthur C. Evans Jr., Ph.D., BA ’82, MA ’84, will receive the FAU Alumni Hall of Fame Award on Friday, May 5 at 9 a.m. In March, Evans became CEO of the American Psychological Association, the leading scientific and professional organization representing psychology in the United States. He previously served as commissioner of Philadelphia’s Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual Disabilities Services, where he realigned the agency’s treatment philosophy, service delivery model and fiscal priorities to improve health outcomes. Evans was named by the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy as an Advocate for Action in 2015, and also received the Dr. Nathan Davis Award for Outstanding Government Service, the American Medical Association’s top award for government service in health care. Evans holds a doctorate in clinical and community psychology from the University of Maryland, and both a master’s and bachelor’s degree in psychology from FAU.

Spring commencement also highlights the accomplishments of outstanding graduates, including:

Ndjuma Joseph, 28, will become the first blind student to graduate from FAU’s Department of Music within the Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters on Friday, May 5 at 1 p.m. Joseph was born with hip dysplasia that left her in a wheelchair her entire life. She later suffered complete vision loss after an accident in elementary school. After using music to help her cope with her disabilities, Joseph dreamed of becoming a music teacher, and FAU helped make her dream become a reality. With help from Student Accessibility Services and the Department of Music, Joseph learned Braille music notation to complete the music curriculum. Following graduation, she will work with the Industry for the Blind and the Miami Lighthouse for the Blind helping other students who are visually impaired find the proper resources to continue their education.

Some interesting statistics regarding the spring graduating class include the fact that 101 of the degree recipients are over the age of 50. The oldest graduate is 68, and the youngest is 17. The graduates represent 50 countries.

For the convenience of family members and friends who cannot attend the commencement ceremonies, the proceedings will be cybercast at www.fau.edu.