Fairleigh Dickinson University holds 72nd Commencement on May 19
More than 3,000 students from 49 countries and 37 states to receive degrees
Teaneck, NJ — On Tuesday, May 19, 2015, MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ will be the new site for the 72nd Commencement ceremony of Fairleigh Dickinson University. More than 3,000 students will receive doctoral, master’s, bachelor’s and associate degrees.
The Commencement ceremony will begin at 10 a.m. and will be broadcast live on the web, allowing family and friends around the world to share the ceremony with the graduates.
During the ceremony, the University will confer honorary degrees on Harry Carson, New York Giants hall of fame linebacker, Claudio Grossman, dean, American University Washington College of Law, and Angeliki Frangou, FDU alum (BS’86) and chairman and CEO of Navios Maritime Holdings. Harry Carson will serve as the commencement speaker.
The campus provosts will present the Student Pinnacle Awards to this year’s winners: Ariel McKayle from New York, NY, representing the Metropolitan Campus in Teaneck, NJ, Christopher Trautman from Clinton, NJ, representing the Florham Campus and Camila Castro from El Salvador representing the Vancouver Campus in British Columbia, Canada.
Numbering just over 3,000, FDU’s class of 2015 hails from 49 countries and 37 states. The top five most popular undergraduate majors are psychology, nursing, communications, accounting and criminal justice, while the top five most popular graduate majors are computer science, teaching, accounting, business administration and public administration.
Honorary Degree Recipients
New York Giants Hall of Fame Linebacker
A former linebacker for the New York Giants, Harry Carson, had an illustrious NFL career that spanned 13 seasons and included a Super Bowl championship in 1987 and nine Pro Bowl appearances. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2006 as its 231st member.
While still a player in 1985, Carson and fellow Giant George Martin, worked with Kenneth Vehrkens, dean of FDU’s Petrocelli College of Continuing Studies to develop a degree-completion program for his teammates and their families. This program became an academic model throughout the NFL.
Following his retirement from playing football in 1988, he began a second career in sports broadcasting with a spot as co-host on CNN’s “NFL Preview.” He also appeared on WCBS as a sports analyst and was a special correspondent for NFL playoffs and the Super Bowl on ABC’s “Good Morning America.” Currently, Carson is the co-host of the Giants’ game day preview show, “Giants 1st and 10.”
After being diagnosed with post-concussion syndrome in 1990, Carson became an advocate for his pro football brethren and on the issue brain injuries. Carson was one of the first professional athletes to draw attention to the association between concussions and neurological abnormalities in those who have played contact sports or served in the military.
Carson received a bachelor’s degree in education from South Carolina State University. He then continued his graduate studies at South Carolina State and Fairleigh Dickinson University.
Professor of Law and Dean of American University Washington College of Law and Raymond I. Geraldson Scholar for International and Humanitarian Law
Claudio Grossman, dean of American University Washington College of Law and the Raymond I. Geraldson Scholar for International and Humanitarian Law, is an expert on international law, human rights, and inter-American affairs. Grossman was unanimously re-elected in May 2012 to a third term as chair of the United Nations Committee Against Torture, a position which he has held since April 2008, and has been a committee member following his November 2003 election to that body.
He was previously a member of the Commission for the Control of Interpol’s Files. Grossman served as president of the College of the Americas, an organization of colleges and universities in the Western Hemisphere, from November 2003-November 2007. Previously, he was a member of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights from 1993-2001, where he served in numerous capacities including twice as its president (1996 and 2001) as well as the special rapporteur on the rights of indigenous populations and the special rapporteur on women's rights.
He has participated in numerous on-site visits and election-observing missions in Eastern Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East. He has also worked on international legal issues with the United Nations and the International Human Rights Law Group (now known as Global Rights). Grossman is fluent in Spanish, French, and Dutch.
He is the author of numerous books and articles on international law, human rights, and the law of international organizations, and the recipient of numerous awards for his work in those fields.
Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Navios Maritime Holdings.
Angeliki Frangou is chairman of the board and CEO of Navios Maritime Holdings. Frangou has held her current position at Navios for the past six years. In 2001, she founded Maritime Enterprises Management S.A., a company located in Piraeus, Greece, that specializes in the management of dry cargo vessels. From 1990 to October 2001, Frangou served as the chief executive officer of Franser Shipping S.A. She is a member of the board of The United Kingdom Mutual Steam Ship Assurance Association and vice chairman of the China Classification Society Mediterranean Committee.
Frangou also has an extensive background in banking. Prior to her employment with Franser Shipping, she worked as an analyst on the trading floor of Republic National Bank of New York. She was also a member of the board of directors of Emporiki Bank of Greece, the second largest retail bank in Greece, from April 2004 to July 2005. She is chairman of the board of directors of IRF European Finance Investments Ltd., which is listed on the Specialist Fund Market of the London Stock Exchange.
Frangou is the chairman of the board of directors of IRF European Finance Investments Ltd. She received a BS in mechanical engineering from Fairleigh Dickinson University, summa cum laude, (BS’86 [Metro]) and a master’s degree in mechanical engineering from Columbia University.
Student Pinnacle Winners
The 2015 Student Pinnacle Awards will be presented to Ariel McKayle of New York, NY, representing the Metropolitan Campus; Christopher Trautman of Clinton, NJ representing the Florham Campus and Camila Castro from El Salvador, representing the Vancouver Campus.
The Pinnacle Award is the highest honor the University bestows on a graduating student. One student from each campus who has demonstrated academic excellence, public service and commitment to the University is honored. Winners will address their fellow graduates and the assembled audience.
Ariel McKayle, New York, NY
Ariel McKayle, of New York, NY, will graduate with a Masters in Elementary Education from FDU’s QUEST program. She received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology from FDU in 2014. She has worked on campus with a number of departments including Office of Admissions, Dean of Students, University Players and Student Life. She served on the executive board for Student Programming, SPECTRUM and Nubian Ladies. McKayle made Academic Deans list every semester and was named to Phi Zeta Kappa Honors and Phi Alpha Theta National Honor Society for history. In 2014 she received the University Psychology award and was named Officer of the Year by the Student Government Association. Upon graduation, McKayle seeks to find a position as an elementary school teacher or as a member of the student life staff in a higher education setting — all while she pursues her dream to become a TV host.
Christopher Trautman, Clinton, NJ
Christopher Trautman, of Clinton NJ, will graduate summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in English language and literature with a concentration in world literature. He received a 2015 Jordan Smith Undergraduate Fellowship Award. He was presented with the 2014 Theodore J. Ross Award for Excellence in Critical Writing, the 2015 Lester Dunham Award for Outstanding Achievement in Literary Study, and the 2015 Keyishian Award for service to Sigma Tau Delta, the International English Honor Society. He was recognized with MACUHO (Mid-Atlantic Association of College and University Housing Officers) Academic Excellence awards in 2013 and 2014, after serving as a resident advisor for three years. Trautman is also a member of Phi Zeta Kappa Honor Society and Order of Omega, the national Greek Honor Society. He is a brother in the Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity. Following graduation, Trautman study educational leadership at Montclair State University.
Camila Castro, El Salvador
Camila Castro, originally of El Salvador, will graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. She represented the University at the 2014 National Model United Nations Conference in New York. Afterwards, Castro cofounded the FDU Model UN Club. She also cofounded a discussion and debate club, FDU Thinkers, which engages students, professor, and staff members. As student government association vice-president, she helped formalize clubs on campus to enhance campus life. She worked as a research assistant for the Modernist Version Project where she produced digital editions based on the following works: Ernest Hemingway’s “In Our Time” and H.D.’s seven poems in “Des Imagistes” and their revisions in “Sea Garden.” Upon graduation, Castro is moving to Toronto, Canada to pursue a career in trade and international relations; eventually she plans to return to school to study global affairs at the graduate level.
FDU extends our sincere thanks to MetLife Stadium and their partners for making space available on such short notice and working around the schedule for existing events in order to accommodate the University’s graduation ceremony.
About Fairleigh Dickinson University
Devoted to the preparation of world citizens through global education, Fairleigh Dickinson is New Jersey's largest private university and features more than 100 liberal arts and professional degree programs, two international campuses, dozens of partnerships with internationally renowned institutions and special programs and status within the United Nations. For more information, visit http://www.fdu.edu.
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