Rowan University’s Commencement 2019 celebration will feature 12 ceremonies, beginning with the main university-wide event Saturday, May 11, and running through Thursday, May 16, with celebrations for individual colleges and schools. More than 2,600 students from the Class of ’19 will participate in the main university ceremony.
Rowan 2001 alumnus and international fitness celebrity Shaun T will deliver the University’s keynote address at Coach Richard Wackar Stadium on the Glassboro campus.
Born Shaun Thompson, Shaun T has credited a college experience he had teaching an aerobics class at Rowan with igniting a passion for fitness that became a lifestyle and a business. The founder of Shaun T Inc., he has amassed $1 billion in total fitness sales since 2007 with his string of at-home workouts including Hip Hop Abs, INSANITY and Transform: 20.
Raised in Deptford, today Shaun T is also a motivational speaker, television personality, choreographer and author who in 2013 received Rowan’s Distinguished Alumnus Award. In addition to delivering the keynote address, he will receive a Medal of Excellence for Entrepreneurship.
In addition to awarding degrees, the most important part of Commencement, Rowan uses the weeklong series of programs to honor individuals, some of whom address graduates during ceremonies.
During the main ceremony May 11, Rowan will award disability rights activist Judith Heumann an honorary doctoral degree. Among her many achievements, Heumann co-founded the World Institute on Disability in 1983 and served as its co-director until 1993. Appointed Special Advisor for International Disability Rights by President Barack Obama, she also served as Assistant Secretary of Education for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services under President Bill Clinton.
Heumann visited the College of Education during Disability and Inclusion Week 2017 where she spoke about the importance of disability rights and inclusion and, since then, has been a regular guest lecturer on disability studies and inclusive education. She also advises College of Education faculty on domestic and international disability rights work.
Rowan’s Distinguished Alumnus for 2019 is N.J. State Senator Troy Singleton ’05, who will also be honored during the May 11 program.
Elected to the state Senate in 2018, Singleton serves Legislative District 7, which includes the municipalities of Beverly, Bordentown, Bordentown Township, Burlington, Burlington Township, Cinnaminson, Delanco, Delran, Edgewater Park, Fieldsboro, Florence, Moorestown, Mount Laurel, Palmyra, Riverside, Riverton and Willingboro. He served in the General Assembly from 2011-2017.
College and School Ceremonies
Please note that programs held outside at Coach Richard Wackar Stadium and on University Green do not require tickets but indoor ceremonies, including those held in Pfleeger Concert Hall (in Wilson Hall) and those moved inside in the event of rain, do require tickets. E-Tickets became available April 15 to all students who completed a Commencement participation form by the deadline of April 1.
Monday, May 13
On Monday, Rowan will celebrate Commencement with a combined program for the School of Health Professions and the College of Science & Mathematics (Math & Computer Science departments only) at 10 a.m. A second program will be held for the College of Science & Mathematics (all other departments) at 2 p.m.
Tuesday, May 14
Tuesday’s program will include ceremonies for the William G. Rohrer College of Business at 10 a.m., the School of Earth & Environment (in Pfleeger Concert Hall) at noon and the College of Humanities & Social Sciences at 2 p.m.
The speaker for the College of Business will be alumna Debra P. DiLorenzo, president and chief executive officer, Chamber of Commerce Southern New Jersey, who will receive a Medal of Excellence for Distinguished Service. Alumna Kathleen Davis, executive vice president and chief operating officer, Chamber of Commerce Southern New Jersey, will also receive a Medal of Excellence for Distinguished Service.
Addressing graduates from the School of Earth & Environment will be Dr. Anne Madden, technology founder and chief scientific officer at the food technology company Lachancea LLC of Raleigh, North Carolina. Madden will receive a Medal of Excellence for Research.
Wednesday, May 15
Festivities on Wednesday will include programs for the College of Communication & Creative Arts at 10 a.m., the College of Performing Arts at noon (in Pfleeger Concert Hall) and the College of Education at 4 p.m.
Celebrated journalist Trymaine Lee B'03 will deliver the keynote for the CCCA and he’ll receive the Medal of Excellence for Alumni Achievement. Among numerous achievements since graduating, Lee earned a Pulitzer Prize for his role in team coverage of Hurricane Katrina with The Times-Picayune newspaper in New Orleans.
Writer/choreographer Andrew Simonet will deliver the keynote for the College of Performing Arts and he will receive the Medal of Excellence for Distinguished Service.
Dr. Lamont Repollet will address the College of Education’s Commencement program and he will receive the Medal of Excellence for Distinguished Service. Repollet became superintendent of the Asbury Park school district in 2014 and New Jersey’s Commissioner of Education last year.
Thursday, May 16
On Thursday, ceremonies will be held for the Henry M. Rowan College of Engineering at 10 a.m., Cooper Medical School of Rowan University at noon (in Pfleeger Concert Hall) and the School of Osteopathic Medicine and the Graduate School of Biological Sciences at 2 p.m.
Brighid Burgin Hoempler B'12 will address graduates of the College of Engineering and will receive the Medal of Excellence for Alumni Achievement.
Dr. Claire Pomeroy will deliver the keynote to graduates of CMSRU and will receive the Medal of Excellence for Distinguished Service.
Dr. Ronald Ayres will receive the Medal of Excellence for Distinguished Service during the SOM/GSBS program and Dr. Jennifer Caudle D.O.'05 will receive the Distinguished Alumna award.
For a full Commencement week schedule and further details, please visit www.rowan.edu/commencement.