Tuesday, June 19, 2012
The Tassel's Worth the Hassle
graduate in 2012
Released by Anne Russell, UFV
UFV President Mark Evered (L), Red Robinson and Chancellor Brian
Minter at convocation ceremony last week.
were Van Meers and Dhaliwals, Malloways and Froeses, and Kims and
MacDonalds in the spotlight on June 14 and 15 as more than a
thousand new graduates of the University of the Fraser Valley
crossed the stage at three convocation ceremonies at the Abbotsford
Entertainment and Sports Centre adjacent to the Abbotsford campus.
Approximately 2,100 students
earned credentials at UFV this year (ranging from 10-month
certificates through diplomas, bachelor's degrees, and master's
degrees) and at least half of them attended ceremonies for their
moment of glory as friends and family from across the Fraser Valley
and beyond cheered them on from the stands.
UFV president Mark Evered told the graduates that convocation marks
the end of one phase of life and the beginning of another.
"I know you faced many challenges in your studies and in your lives
outside of classes. I know about your sacrifices and the talent and
effort you needed to succeed. You're entitled to be proud of that,
because we are very proud of you too. But I'm sure your studies have
also brought a sense of humility. Mine certainly did. Every time I
learn something new, I discover more I don't know and need to know.
"But what I know is that your education at UFV will be the
foundation from which you can reach with confidence into the
unknown. Build on what you know, and enthusiastically embrace the
new opportunities for creativity and service ahead. Be humbled by
what you don't know, but proud of what you do, and don't be shy
about tackling the tough things."
Three student speakers also addressed convocation, one at each of
Bachelor of Arts graduate Jack Brown spoke about the revolutionary
nature of the university.
"We must first remember, for our own sakes, our education,
revolutionary as it is. And then we must go forth and join battle,
to find all of those injustices, the big ones and the small ones,
and right them. We cannot be deterred, whether from our own weakness
or the malicious lethargy of those that came before. Our age is one
of unemployment, of a malaise in our economy and in our hearts that
makes everyone a pessimist. It leads ourselves to question the value
of reading Avicenna and Hemingway, and opens the path to a sapping
of the spirit. To give in to this urge, to throw down our arms is to
rob the world of our creativity, of our passions, and of our reason.
"A significant period in my life has come to a close, and it has in
your lives too. I do not know what will happen next, what moves I
will make, what jobs I might hold.... We must remember; we must
better ourselves, and we must bring forth all of our talents into
this world and not shrink from the adversity that awaits us.
"And of course, we must defend this place ... the very idea of the
university. It's that thing that animates everything which we have
done here, that keeps the staff and faculty and even the bureaucrats
going, even if they don't know it. It is the revolutionary
proposition that knowledge has value simply because it is knowledge;
that education is open to any man or woman from whatever place and
whatever background; that the freedom to think differently, to
debate, and yes, even disagree with authority is an activity worth
celebration, not condemnation."
Jennifer Ofeimu, a graduate of the Teacher Education program,
reminded the graduates that they are among the lucky ones.
"Despite the lack of sleep, lack of a social life, and the lack of a
bank account we are truly privileged; only 6.7% of the world's
population has graduated with a university or college degree. We
have the ability to act upon our liberties; to live in a place and
time where we can have freedom of thought, freedom of speech, and as
professionals we cannot lose sight of what has been afforded us. My
wish for us all is that our knowledge becomes the positive
progression of tomorrow; that we are the social agents of change. As
we step firmly with integrity we will move forward and share our
privilege with others. "
Bachelor of Science in Nursing grad Matt Krabbendam, spoke on a
theme of overcoming quitting points.
"We all have our quitting points. We need to break through them! We
grow the most when we push through them. Breaking through a quitting
point builds momentum that will carry you to the finish. Visualize
the reward, the end result, the payoff. If could be your first pay
cheque, or the satisfaction of writing a last exam. Today, we are
UFV conferred honorary degrees on Sto:lo elder Ray Silver Sr., rock
and roll radio pioneer and veteran broadcaster Red Robinson, and
professional hockey player turned advocate for child sexual abuse
victims Sheldon Kennedy.
Top academic awards went to Donna Alary (governor general's gold
medal), Ricardo Gigglberger (governor general's silver medal),
Marina Parapini (governor general's bronze medal), and Kyriel Funk
(lieutenant governor's medal). Deans' medals went to Rosanna
Martens, Deni Hawley, and Crystal Drouillard. The Teaching
Excellence award went to Dr. Sheryl MacMath of Teacher Education,
and the Research Excellence award went to Dr. Olav Lian of
Geography. The Betty Urquhart community service award went to the
Choice program at the Agassiz Centre for Education, and Pacific
Riding for Developing Abilities (Chilliwack).
Copyright (c) 2012 The Valley Voice