PHOTO CAPTIONS: Above and below, Ferris State University graduated more than 900 students with degrees and certificates at the close of the Fall 2019 semester. On Saturday, more than 500 participated in ceremonies on Saturday, Dec. 14.
In celebration of the newest members of the Class of 2019, the Saturday, Dec. 14 Ferris
State University commencement ceremonies were rich in stories of opportunity and perseverance.
More than 900 students graduated at the close of the Fall 2019 semester with degrees
and certificates – including the 500-plus who participated in Saturday’s ceremonies
on the Big Rapids campus.
The morning session honored graduates of the colleges of Arts, Sciences and Education, Education and Human Services, and Engineering Technology. The afternoon session highlighted graduates of the colleges of Business and Health Professions.
“Ferris State University is one of Michigan’s great public institutions of higher education,” said Amna Seibold, chair of Ferris’ Board of Trustees. “As someone who greatly values a college education, I would like to share with you a few thoughts about the value of your Ferris State University education. It is part of your past, part of your present and will always be a part of your future. The last four years are a part of your past. You have made friends you will cherish forever. They have developed you and changed you in profound ways. The last four years will always be an important part of your life story.”
Seibold added, “Your Ferris education is opening doors, and employment opportunities or will help you if you go on to even higher education.”
Tracy Nichols Busch, the 2019 recipient of Ferris’ Distinguished Teacher Award, was Saturday’s featured speaker. Busch, an associate professor of Humanities in the College of Arts, Sciences and Education, offered messages of perseverance, being open to change and forgiveness to the Class of 2019.
“College has given you a space to become your own person. I have seen the changes in you, and they are profound,” said Busch, who is also the lead faculty for Ferris’ Museum of Sexist Objects. “Life will never cease putting obstacles in your way. You already know what I mean. You’ve dealt with them and arrived here today. The vast majority of Americans do not have the piece of paper you will be holding very soon.”
President David Eisler encouraged graduates to reflect on their achievements and urged the Class of 2019 to thank those who contributed to their successes.
“It is a true honor to stand before you, the Class of 2019,” he said. “Today is a wonderful opportunity for you to reflect on your accomplishments here at Ferris State University. At such a time, you need to know your success is built upon the collective efforts of so many people who care about you and take great pride in your growth and development. As you celebrate this achievement, take time to thank those who have worked, helped and supported you. Their sacrifice and love have helped create this moment for you.”
Eisler added, “In stepping beyond your comfort zone, there exists great opportunity for success.”