For Immediate Release
May 12, 2012
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BROCKPORT, NY—Robert Gold, PhD, urged 382 of the newest graduates of The College at Brockport, State University of New York, to utilize their talents and the skills they have developed to make a difference in the world as part of his Commencement address at the College’s graduate student ceremony May 12.
Gold, a Brockport alumnus and dean of the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland, College Park, used a parable to the relay the story of a boy who was doing what he could to save the life of one starfish at a time—despite being questioned for wasting his time because of his inability to make a big enough difference. He went on to imagine the difference that the graduates in some of Brockport’s prominent fields of study could make—from biologists to dancers.
“To create innovation takes exceptional conviction, and a willingness to take risk,” Gold said. “The future is in your hands; and when you can’t think anymore with your brain—when it’s full, think with your heart.”
Brockport President John R. Halstead, PhD, has similar grand expectations for the Brockport Class of 2012.
“This celebration today is yours,” Halstead told the graduates, “as we are here to recognize your many accomplishments and to reflect upon your future. I’m no soothsayer, but I predict a bright future, indeed, for each and every one of your—our proud graduates.”
He also offered them some advice.
“Remember that you are—and always will be—a valued member of The College at Brockport family. Take pride in your graduate degrees. Stay active in the life of your community,” Halstead said. “Listen to the wisdom of others while you share your new-found wisdom. Be inspired.”
Also during the ceremony, Jesse Williams, a student in the Department of Counselor Education, was presented with the College’s Distinguished Scholar Award—which goes to a graduate student who has a minimum GPA of 3.85, and who has demonstrated achievement, outstanding scholarship or creative activity and strong evidence of professional promise.
Lauren Lieberman, PhD, was presented with one of SUNY’s highest honors—the rank of Distinguished Service Professor. Lieberman, who teaches in the Department of Kinesiology, Sport Studies, and Physical Education, was presented with a medallion by Brockport Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Anne Huot, PhD.
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