156 receive degrees in 'historic' commencement
May 13, 2008

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  • The first cohort of Master’s degree candidates, the largest undergraduate class, and an honorary doctorate combined to make Bryan’s commencement on May 10 an historic event, President Stephen Livesay said.
    Eleven graduate students received Master’s of Business Administration degrees, leading the way for a growing MBA program and blazing the trail for what college officials expect to be the first of a number of graduate programs. And, counting the 89 undergraduates who received degrees in December, the Class of 2008 includes a record 234 graduates.
    A special moment in the graduation program came as Dr. Livesay conferred on Erwin D. “Lat” Latimer the honorary Doctor of Humane Letters. Mr. Latimer, who has served as a Bryan trustee since 1992, “models what it means to give everything that you have with every ounce of energy to promote Bryan,” Dr. Livesay said.
    Paul Gutacker, a senior communication studies major from New Egypt, N.J., gave the commencement address. He challenged his classmates to allow “the Gospel of Jesus Christ [to] be a weighty hope which guides our very lives, and let our prayer be that of the Puritans: ‘May God be honored by the enlarging of our desires, the boldness of our hope, and the greatness of our expectation.’”
    Nearly 2,000 family members and friends watched as the 11 MBA graduates, 54 BA graduates and 91 BS graduates received their diplomas from Trustee Chairman T. Ramon Perdue and a congratulatory handshake from Dr. Livesay.