|Commencement Week In Full Gear at Mount Aloysius||05/10/2013|
Cresson, Pa.-With Commencement scheduled for this Saturday, May 11th at 10:00 a.m., the activity level and anticipation at Mount Aloysius College is very high. Marking the 160th Graduation Ceremony, Mount Aloysius will honor the academic achievements of 412 graduates; conferring 200 Associates degree; 191 Bachelor’s degrees and 24 Masters Degrees. Three graduates will be receiving dual degrees. Graduates for 2013 represent the states of Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia.
The Commencement of Mount Aloysius will take place in the College’s Health and Physical Fitness Center.
In addition to Commencement, the Class of 2013 will be feted at a traditional Graduate Toast held Thursday morning, May 9th at 10:00 a.m. in Cosgrave Hall. Practice for Commencement takes place immediately after the Toast. Gathering in several locations, grads and principles will take a “dry run” working out the academic choreography of moving nearly 500 people through campus, passing throngs of well-wishers and then into their seats – all in alphabetical order.
In addition to processing into the Health and Physical Fitness Center, Thursday’s rehearsal will give graduates an appreciation of the many academic traditions—some dating from medieval times in such faraway universities as Oxford and Cambridge.
Leading the procession will be the Bearer of the Ceremonial Mace. At Mount Aloysius College the mace was designed by Mr. L. Franklin Gilliam and Mrs. Mary Saylor. It is constructed of steel and wood—the combination of material representing the fusion of industrial and natural resources found in the Southern Allegheny Mountains. The mace represents the authority of the College’s faculty; these materials radiate the concepts of warmth and strength. The steel flame atop the Mount Aloysius mace symbolizes the College’s traditional motto—“With Our Light, We Serve.”
In addition, several students—selected for their unique contribution to the Class of 2013, will serve as Gonfalon Bearers. The gonfalon is a flag that hangs from a crossbar. This tradition was born in the medieval republics of Italy. The gonfalon serves as an ensign of state or office. At Mount Aloysius College the four gonfalons displayed represent the academic divisions of the College and the four Mercy Values of Faith, Hospitality, Justice, and Service.
On Friday May 10th at 3:30 p.m., Bishop of the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown, His Excellency Mark L. Bartchak will preside over the College’s Baccalaureate Mass in the Our Lady of Mercy Chapel. The Chapel is located in the iconic Main Building on the 193-acre campus.
Following the Baccalaureate Mass, at 5:00 p.m., six Pinning Ceremonies honoring graduates of the College’s six health related majors will begin.
The Medical Assistant Pinning Ceremony will take place in McAuley Hall. The Chapel will be the site of the Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences Pinning Ceremony. Medical Laboratory Technology graduates will receive their pins in the beautiful Library Overlook. The Nursing Division graduates will receive their nursing pins in the College’s Health and Physical Fitness Center. Physical Therapist Assistant majors will be honored in Alumni Hall and student graduating from the Surgical Technology program will be pinned in the Wolf-Kuhn Gallery.
On Friday night, a Reception for all graduates who received their pins will follow the formal ceremonies. Graduates and their families will attend in addition to Mount Aloysius College administration, staff, faculty and members of the College’s Board of Trustees.
Last month, Mount Aloysius President Tom Foley announced that Patricia R. Rooney will serve as the College’s Commencement Speaker for 2013. Mrs. Rooney is the wife of former Ambassador to Ireland, and Pittsburgh Steeler owner, Dan Rooney. During Commencement, the College will confer four honorary degrees. Recipients include: Patricia R. and Dan Rooney, receiving Doctor of Social Justice degrees as a couple, honoris causa; MIT Professor Jim Walsh, Ph.D., receiving the Doctor of Humane Letters degree honoris and Mrs. Shirley A. Pechter, of Altoona, receiving the Doctor of Social Justice degree, honoris causa.
Delivering the Invocation for Commencement will be Ms. April Tewksbury of Wyalusing, Pa., a cum laude graduate with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration, specializing in Health Care Administration. Ms. Tewksbury is a Mercy Presidential Scholar.
Offering a Welcome message to the Commencement gathering will be Ms. Jennifer Smith of Claysburg, Pa. Ms. Smith is a summa cum laude graduate with a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology with a specialization in Counseling. She is a distinguished member of the Delta Epsilon Sigma Honor Society.
Student Speaker for the Mount Aloysius College 2013 Commencement is Ms. Jessica Seasoltz of Altoona, Pa. Ms. Seasoltz will graduate, magna cum laude, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology with a specialization in Pre-Health Professional. Ms. Seasoltz is a distinguished member of the Delta Epsilon Sigma Honor Society.
Following Commencement, graduates and their guests are invited to a Graduate Buffet at noon in the Cosgrave Dining Hall.