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This year boasted a beautiful graduation weekend as CEHD bestowed degrees on 321 undergraduate, master’s and doctoral students.

The Convocation ceremony was held on Friday, May 30 at the Bob Carpenter Sports Center.Dean Okagaki congratulated our students on their achievement before urging them to use their degree to make a difference.

“One in five children in our country lives in poverty, which puts them at risk for developing social, emotional, learning and behavioral problems. One out of 3 fourth graders in our country cannot read and understand a fourth-grade book.

“These challenges are now your challenges. We – your faculty – are confident that theanalytical skills, the creativity, determination and persistence that brought you here today will enable you to help us solve these difficult social problems.”

Many of our students have already secured employment, accepting positions with Public Allies, Global Board of Missions and the New England Center for Children.  They will be teaching in the US in Delaware, Maryland, New York, Tennessee and Vermont and even internationally, in Italy, England and Japan.

Others are going to graduate school, including University of Virginia and Columbia University, or right here at UD, in our 4+1 programs.

CEHD’s  student speaker, Nikki DiGregorio received a Doctor of Philosophy in Human Development and Family Studies this year. While at UD, she was the recipient of University Dissertation Fellows Award, the Professional Development Award and the Julie Mapes Wilgen Award. She encourage the graduates to translate what they have learned into action.

“As graduates of the College of Education and Human Development it is imperative that we are empathetic in the work we do…It is not our time spent here in it of itself that is extraordinary, it is more what we do with the remarkable opportunities that result from our work here that matters… let’s take our lived experiences here at UD and put them to work and galvanize social change in a way that truly benefits others.”

Dean Okagaki then recognized students who completed the 2-year Career and Life Studies Certificate program through the Center for Disabilities Studies and the undergraduate and graduate students in our College.

Doctoral students were also honored at the Doctoral Hooding ceremony on Friday evening on The Green. Jim Hiebert, the Robert J. Barkley Professor in the School of Education was presented with UD’s Outstanding Doctoral Graduate Student Advising and Mentoring Award.

UD’s commencement ceremony, with Vice President Joe Biden serving as commencement speaker, took place on Saturday, May 31 at the UD stadium.