Despite ominous weather forecasts, the skies were blue for Commencement ceremonies held in Trevecca’s quad, Saturday, May 3, and more than 6,000 were in attendance to see 794 graduates receive their diplomas.
Due to thunder storms the night before and the possibility of a morning rainshower, the ceremony was delayed 30 minutes, but the sun came out shortly after the processional and the ceremony proceeded as planned.
Randy Carden, professor of psychology, delivered the challenge to the graduates. Three members of the graduating class spoke in response: Brian Johnson represented the graduating seniors, Jeff Hart spoke for MHR students, and Lindsay-Blair Wilkinson represented the graduate programs.
Robert Broadbooks, chairperson of Trevecca’s board of trustees, offered congratulations to the graduates. The citizenship award, awarded to one graduating senior each year for outstanding service to the school, was presented to Tommy Byler.
Two honorary degrees were given to two men who have had significant and life-long impacts on their communities. An honorary doctor of letters degree was presented to Carl L. Carlson, founder and director of Men of Valor, a “ministry of hope” with a focus on men incarcerated in the prison system, as well as those returning to society. Carlson’s example has shown countless men that they, too, can live a better life and work hard toward an education, get a good job and have a family. An honorary doctor of divinity was presented to Orville W. Jenkins, Jr., a long-time pastor and church administrator in the Church of the Nazarene, who currently serves as the superintendent of the denomination’s North Florida District.
A Baccalaureate service was held on Friday, May 2, at 7:30 P.M. in Trevecca’s
Following the service, graduates, family members, and guests joined Trevecca faculty, administrators, and staff in a reception hosted by the Trevecca Alumni Association.