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CMU commencement winter 2018

CMU celebrates commencement

University awards 2,932 degrees and certificates at December graduation ceremonies

Contact: Ari Harris

Central Michigan University recognized the academic achievement of 2,932 students during its December commencement exercises, held Saturday, Dec. 15, in McGuirk Arena.

It was the first CMU commencement for President Bob Davies, who became the university's 15th president in September of this year.


President Bob Davies addresses graduates in his first CMU commencement.

In his remarks, Davies encouraged students to embrace the unknown and welcome surprises that provide opportunities for learning and growth.

He also asked graduates to carry CMU's core values into their professional and personal lives.

"I urge you to use those skills to bring CMU's values of integrity, respect, compassion, inclusiveness and social responsibility into every corner of the world. Lead others by your great example," Davies said.


The Board of Trustees approved the August and December roster of graduates, which included:

  • 1,756 bachelor's degrees.
  • 1,035 master's degrees.
  • 78 graduate certificates.
  • 59 doctoral degrees.
  • Four specialist degrees.


CMU awarded 2,932 degrees and certificates at Saturday’s ceremonies.

Three CMU alumni returned to campus to serve as graduation speakers.

Deirdre Drake, a 1989 graduate of the human resources management program, spoke to the 9 a.m. graduates. Drake is executive vice president and chief human resources officer at U.S. Cellular Corp.

The 1:30 p.m. graduates heard from lecturer, author and inclusion advocate Janice Fialka. Fialka graduated from CMU in 1973 with a degree in sociology. 

1973 graduate Daniel Edson spoke at the 5:30 p.m. ceremony. Edson is president and co-founder of the American Proficiency Institute in Traverse City, Michigan, and is nationally recognized as a leader in quality assurance for laboratory medicine.

President Davies presented each speaker with a special honorary degree in acknowledgement of their outstanding contributions to their field of work. 

Drake received an honorary doctor of commercial science degree, Fialka received an honorary doctor of letters degree, and Edson received an honorary doctor of science degree.


Graduates acknowledge the support of friends, family and loved ones. See more scenes from Saturday's commencement ceremonies.

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