Dr. Hill and students

Wofford to hold 162nd Commencement May 15

Alumna Dr. Paige West to be guest speaker; three to receive honorary degrees

Commencement Preview 382x255

SPARTANBURG, S.C. – Wofford College will conduct its 162nd annual Commencement Exercises at 9:30 a.m. Sunday, May 15, on the lawn of Main Building. Alumna Dr. Paige West, a 1991 Wofford graduate, professor of anthropology at Columbia University and chair of the Department of Anthropology at Barnard College, will be the guest speaker.

Some 375 graduates will receive their degrees, and honorary degrees will be awarded to M. Stewart Mungo, a 1974 Wofford graduate and a South Carolina construction and real estate developer; Esther Dyson, founder of the “Way to Wellville” movement; and Dr. John Pilley, professor emeritus of psychology at Wofford and owner and trainer of Chaser, the “smartest dog in the world.” (Full biographies are available at https://www.wofford.edu/newsroom/2016/Alumna-Dr-Paige-West-to-be-Wofford-Commencement-speaker/.)

The college also will present the prestigious Algernon Sydney Sullivan and Mary Mildred Sullivan Awards to two students and two non-students. The Roger Milliken Award for Excellence in the Teaching of Science and the Philip Covington Award for Excellence in the Teaching of Humanities and Social Sciences also will be presented to faculty members.

The Commencement Exercises will be live streamed at https://youtu.be/mgHbnPapVq4. Commencement activities will take place throughout the weekend, including a Baccalaureate Service at 5 p.m. Saturday, May 14, also on the Lawn of Main Building.

(The rain location for both the Baccalaureate Service and Commencement will be Benjamin Johnson Arena.)

Here is the schedule for Commencement weekend:

Friday, May 13
ROTC Commissioning Ceremony
2 p.m., Leonard Auditorium, Main Building
Speaker: Maj. Gen. Gregory W. Batts, Wofford Class of 1979

The Southern Guards Battalion ROTC will observe the time-honored tradition of commissioning its graduating cadets to the rank of second lieutenant in the United States Army, Army Reserve and National Guard. Maj. Gen. Gregory W. Batts, a 1979 Wofford graduate and assistant adjutant general for the South Carolina Army National Guard in Columbia, S.C., will be the guest speaker. Batts received his commission as an infantry second lieutenant in May 1979 through the Southern Guards Battalion ROTC at Wofford, where he was a Distinguished Military Graduate. Throughout his military career he has served as a traditional citizen-soldier in the SCARNG while pursuing a civilian career with the Charleston (S.C.) Police Department, from which he retired in October 2003. He was promoted to major general on Sept. 16, 2012, and on Feb. 15, 2014, he was assigned as deputy adjutant general with the South Carolina National Guard. A reception will follow the ceremony in the Papadopoulos Room.

Saturday, May 14
Baccalaureate Service
5 p.m. Lawn of Main Building

This special service for graduating seniors and their families led by Perkins-Prothro Chaplain Ron Robinson will be followed by a reception on the lawn.

Sunday, May 15
Commencement Exercises
9:30 a.m., Lawn of Main Building

Dr. Paige West, a 1991 Wofford graduate, professor of anthropology at Columbia University and chair of the Department of Anthropology at Barnard College, will be the guest speaker. During the event, some 375 graduates will receive their degrees and three honorary degrees will be presented. A number of awards also will be presented. The Class of 1966 will be special guests at the event.

Immediately following the Commencement Exercises
Lemonade on the Lawn

Front lawn of the Roger Milliken Science Center and Burwell Building


Rain Plan:
In the event of rain, the Baccalaureate and the Commencement Exercise will be held in the Benjamin Johnson Arena. If Commencement is moved to the arena, guests will be required to have tickets, provided to members of the senior class. Seating will be limited; the ceremony will be live streamed in Leonard Auditorium in Main Building for the overflow guests. The live stream link is https://youtu.be/mgHbnPapVq4.

Accessibility Parking:

Special parking will be available for the Baccalaureate Service and the Commencement Exercise on the mall drive behind Main Building between Shipp and DuPre Residence Halls on Evins Street. To make arrangements for special assistance, call Randy Hall, director of campus safety, at 864-597-4351 or halljr@wofford.edu.

Gatherings on Campus:

Individuals and families who wish to have a gather on campus during Commencement Weekend should contact John Blair, director of conference services, at 864-597-4404 or blairji@wofford.edu.