McDaniel celebrates 138th Commencement

May 27, 2008

Relatives and friends of the Class of 2008 cheered as McDaniel College awarded 216 master’s degrees and 314 bachelor’s degrees May 24 at its 138th Commencement.

Top academic honors went to Patrick Bonaduce, who received the Argonaut Award for earning the highest grade point average, while Emily Paull received an Edith Farr Ridington Phi Beta Kappa Writing Award for the most well-written thesis.

Prior to the ceremony, graduates marched through Memorial Plaza as Old Main bell rang loud and clear. Since 1991, seniors have passed by the bell, now mounted on a brick pedestal, for the ceremony that signals the closing chapter in their academic lives. As first-year students, they each rang the same bell to symbolize the beginning of their college career.

Joining the recipients in cap and gown was James Melhorn, President and CEO of EMA Inc. and McDaniel College Board Chair Emeritus, who received a Doctor of Business Administration. Helen Thomas, White House reporter and columnist for Hearst Newspapers, received a Doctor of Journalism degree but was unable to attend due to a health concern.

“I encourage you to give back through your time, talents and resources,” Melhorn told the graduates and their guests. “I am talking about individual volunteerism where we give back through our time, talents and resources through community services, religious organizations, by supporting the arts or environmental efforts, by mentoring the next generation and/or giving back to your college.”