More than 5,000 graduates to be honored at 133rd commencement
May 5, 2005
Virginia Tech will hold its 133rd commencement ceremonies at 6 p.m. Friday, May 13, in Lane Stadium/Worsham Field. Individual college and departmental convocation ceremonies will be held throughout the day on Saturday, May 14.
The university's commencement ceremony will honor approximately 3,396 undergraduate candidates and 1,106 graduate degree candidates -- 898 masters, 24 Ed.D.s, 184 Ph.D.s. In addition, Virginia Tech will graduate 88 D.V.M. students.
Virginia Tech's 25th Northern Virginia Center commencement ceremony will be held at 3 p.m. Sunday, May 15, at the George Mason University Center for the Arts in Fairfax, Va. Out of Virginia Tech's 1,106 graduate degree candidates, 261 will be from the National Capital Region.
In addition, Virginia Tech's Pamplin College of Business will graduate its inaugural executive MBA class on Saturday, June 11. Former vice president Walter F. Mondale will deliver the commencement address.
Virginia Tech President Charles W. Steger will preside over all four ceremonies.
David L. Calhoun, president and CEO of GE Transportation will address the 2005 graduating class at the 6 p.m. Friday ceremony. Virginia Tech alumna Judith I. Bailey, president of Western Michigan University, will give the Graduate School’s commencement address at 1:30 p.m. in Cassell Coliseum.
Calhoun, a 1979 Virginia Tech graduate in accounting and member of the Pamplin Advisory Council, has been with GE since graduation. He has worked in various divisions of the company in positions of increasing responsibility. He was appointed president, Pacific region, of GE Plastics in 1994. Appointed president and CEO of GE Transportation Systems in 1995, Calhoun went on to serve as president and CEO of GE Lighting, GE’s Employers Reinsurance Corporation, and GE Aircraft Engines. When the latter integrated with GE Rail in January 2004, Calhoun was named GE Transportation’s president and CEO.
GE Transportation’s products and services include jet engines for military and civil aircraft, freight and passenger locomotives, motorized systems for mining trucks and drills, and gas turbines for marine and industrial applications.
Bailey, who has just received Virginia Tech’s 2005 Graduate Alumni Achievement Award, became the seventh president of Western Michigan University in June 2003. Since, she has overseen the university’s largest capital campaign. She also was instrumental in establishing the Biosciences Research and Commercialization Center at WMU with funding from the Michigan legislature. She also helped direct the formation of the WMU Research Foundation.
Each May, approximately 5,000 Virginia Tech undergraduate, graduate, and professional students complete their degree requirements and participate in commencement ceremonies. Approximately 15,000 to 20,000 family members and guests travel to Blacksburg to join graduating students.
On April 23, the Virginia Tech Richmond Center graduated its first Masters in Public Administration (MPA) class in a ceremony held at the center. Four graduates, Julia Sleaman, Catherine Harrison, Richard Brown, and Melissa Throckmorton Hallman, completed the program requirements earlier that day by presenting the findings of their professional research papers. Sleaman and Harrison began the program the fall of 2001, while Brown and Throckmorton Hallman started the spring of 2002.
For more information on Virginia Tech spring commencement activities, call the Commencement Hotline at (540) 231-3208 or visit the commencement website. Should inclement weather be a factor in Friday’s Lane Stadium ceremony, call the university Weather Line at (540) 231-6668 or check the university homepage.