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Commencement 2017: Full Coverage Available Here

Check back regularly for updates and stories as RWU celebrates the Class of 2017 graduates

BRISTOL, R.I. – In a time-honored tradition, the Roger Williams University Class of 2017 students will cross the Commencement stage and receive their hard-earned degrees on Saturday, May 20. To send them off onto their next journey, Patrice Wood, an NBC 10 news anchor, will deliver the keynote address and receive an honorary degree, along with Pablo Rodriguez, a leader in the state’s health care services and a professor at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University.

A day earlier, on Friday, May 19, David Wilkins – a groundbreaking Harvard Law School professor and onetime clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall – will serve as the keynote speaker and receive an honorary degree at the Commencement exercises for RWU Law. During the ceremony, the law school will also present an honorary degree to Janet L. Coit, director of the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management, and RWU Law Professor Bruce Kogan, a founding faculty member at RWU Law who twice served as dean.

In the days before and after Commencement, this page will be updated with stories, slideshows and other coverage related to this year’s Commencement ceremonies. Here is just a small sampling of what this year’s graduates have been up to:

  • As any good philosopher knows, Matthew Fanikos ’17 – a philosophy major and this year’s student commencement speaker – says the secret to living a happy, fulfilled life lies in continuing to reflect, question and grow beyond your college career.
  • In the inaugural cohort of Hassenfeld Student Leadership Fellows, five seniors (among seven total Fellows) have been leading projects ranging from a food-recovery effort across the state’s universities and colleges to preparing refugee and asylum cases for low-income families.
  • Can it get any better than to close your senior year among the top finalists that pitched ideas to increase revenue for major pharmaceutical companies? Or to present a major rebrand and advertising campaign to a panel of company directors and industry experts? A number of seniors from the Mario J. Gabelli School of Business culminated their college careers with first, second and third-place wins in national business analytics and advertising competitions.
  • When the Fort Adams Trust needed help in rehabilitating the historic coastal fortress in Newport, they turned to the School of Engineering, Computing & Construction Management and four civil engineering seniors who have been conducting a structural analysis of deteriorating sections.
  • Get a glimpse into some senior research projects featured at SASH, the annual Student Academic and Showcase Honors celebration.
  • This news release details the honorary degree recipients and keynote speakers – NBC 10 news anchor Patrice Wood and groundbreaking Harvard Law School professor David Wilkins – for each of the ceremonies.
  • Visit the Social Media Central page for all things #RWUgrad.
  • For event logistics and event information, visit the Commencement event page.