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Ferris to Host its Spring 2022 Commencement Ceremonies; More Than 2,100 to Graduate

PhotoFerris State University's Spring 2022 commencement ceremonies mark the final for President David Eisler, who is retiring at the end of June.

Ferris State University is wrapping up its 2021-22 academic year with spring commencement Friday, May 6 and Saturday, May 7, in Big Rapids. Ferris expects to graduate approximately 2,100 students with degrees and certificates, including 1,600 planning to take part in five ceremonies over two days inside Jim Wink Arena of the Ewigleben Sports Complex.

On Friday, May 6, commencement ceremonies start with a 3:30 p.m. ceremony for the Michigan College of Optometry and the College Health Professions, followed by a 7 p.m. ceremony for graduates of the Doctorate in Community College Leadership and the College of Pharmacy. The ceremonies continue on Saturday, May 7, with a 9 a.m. session for the College of Business, 12:30 p.m. for the College of Arts, Sciences and Education and a 4 p.m. for the College of Engineering Technology.

In keeping with tradition, spring commencement includes honorary doctorates awarded to its featured speakers, including alumnus Phil Hagerman, who will receive an Honorary Doctorate of Business and Industry. Hagerman will address graduates of the Doctorate in Community College Leadership and the College of Pharmacy at 7 p.m. on Friday, May 6. Alumna Dana King, who will receive an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters, speaks to College of Business graduates on Saturday, May 7, at 9 a.m. Later that day, alumnus Dick Shaw, who will receive an Honorary Doctorate of Industry, will address College of Engineering Technology graduates at 4 p.m. in the last ceremony.

Phil is part of three generations of Hagermans who have earned Ferris Pharmacy degrees. He co-founded Diplomat Pharmacy with his father and led this company for 27 years. During this time, Diplomat grew to be the largest independent provider of specialty pharmacy services in the country. In addition, Phil Hagerman strongly supported the university’s first-ever comprehensive capital campaign, Now and Always, providing a $5 million lead gift to the College of Pharmacy and a second $5 million gift to boost Ferris past its $115 million comprehensive campaign fundraising goal.

King, a broadcast journalist in Los Angeles, San Francisco and national television, earned five Emmys, two Edward R. Murrow Awards, and two Gracie Awards. Currently, she is an award-winning classical figurative sculpturist who creates public monuments of black bodies in bronze. Recently, she was appointed to The Ferris Foundation Board of Directors, a cabinet member of the Jim Crow Museum of Racist Memorabilia Building Campaign. King was named a Ferris Distinguished Alumna in 2018.

Shaw earned his associate and bachelor’s degrees in Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration. A proud veteran, he joined the Ferris faculty after graduation and served for 27 years; he was recognized as the Ferris Distinguished Teacher in 1978 and served as HVACR program director beginning in 1985. Upon retirement, he became a national consultant for the HVACR industry, recognized by the American “Spirit of Independence Award.” Further, Shaw has established and helped to develop multiple scholarship endowments at Ferris, has served on the Ferris Foundation, including chairing the Foundation Board, was highlighted as a Distinguished Alumnus in 2018, and is of the “Now and Always” Campaign Cabinet.

A renowned designer with global residential and commercial projects and an accomplished artist, Stallings is a differentiator in the design industry. Moving from San Francisco to East Lansing during the pandemic, he reached out to Kendall College of Art and Design to explore collaboration opportunities. In December, he established the Ian Stallings Design Endowed Scholarship at KCAD. Stallings, who will receive an Honorary Doctorate of Arts, will address Kendall College of Art and Design graduates on Saturday, May 7, in Grand Rapids.

Students planning to participate in Spring 2022 commencement ceremonies can receive up to six electronic tickets. No extra e-tickets will be distributed by the Commencement Office or the individual college commencement coordinators. Likewise, lost tickets will not be replaced. Guests who do not have tickets can watch the ceremonies via live stream on the Commencement Office website. Click for more information.

E-tickets are required to attend all Big Rapids commencement ceremonies. Children 2 years old and younger do not need a ticket.

Kendall College of Art and Design hosts its commencement ceremony on Saturday, May 7, at the Forest Hills Fine Arts Center (600 Forest Hills Ave. SE, Grand Rapids, Michigan, 49546), beginning at 10 a.m. Tickets are required to attend. In addition, the ceremony will be live-streamed on the KCAD website for people who are unable to attend in person. Additionally, KCAD’s Annual Student Exhibitions are on view to the public in Grand Rapids (17 Fountain St. NW) from Tuesday, May 3 through Saturday, May 7.

For people interested in but unable to attend commencement, the ceremonies are streamed live. Watch the online stream by clicking the link. That live stream will be courtesy of Ferris Cable 22.

Visit the commencement website for more information.

Spring 2022 Ferris State University Commencement Schedule

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Friday, May 6, 2022

3:30 p.m. 

Michigan College of Optometry

College of Health Professions


7 p.m.

College of Pharmacy

Doctorate in Community College Leadership


Saturday, May 7, 2022

9 a.m.

College of Business

12:30 p.m.

College of Arts, Sciences and Education

4 p.m.

College of Engineering Technology