By Amanda Allie

"Where e'er we go, what e're we do, we will raise your standard high. Madonna, our Alma Mater, your colors now bravely fly," 2012 graduates recited at the May Commencement.

Ernest Nolan, Provost, opened the ceremony, which took place at Compuware Arena at 1:30 p.m. Junior Marlena Hampton, a music major, provided a beautiful rendition of "The Star Spangled Banner."

Directly after, Robert Sadjak, the chairman of the Madonna University Board of Trustees, offered graduates, staff, friends, and family a touching welcome.

Special recognition began with Honorary Degree Candidates, including: Sister Mary Barbara Ann Bosch and Sid E. Taylor. Brigadier General and Carol Ann Fausone earned a Distinguished Alumni Award.

Doctoral degrees were respectively earned by Sara Hinderer, Laurie Arnswald, Rosa Berry, Maria Palleschi, MaryPat Pousak, Kristel Ray and Susana Sirianni.

Students receiving a degree or certificate earned their achievement in July 2011, December 2011, April 2012, or may be anticipating a degree or certificate in July 2012.

About 1,100 grads crossed the stage, including seven students who completed Madonna’s Doctor of Nursing Practice program that began in May 2009.

"I am so excited to be celebrating this special day with my family and friends," commented senior Emily Bambac, Biology major. "Today and every day going forward is a blessing."

Other students appeared quite excited, too.

"I had a great experience at Madonna, and am confident the skills and strong education I acquired will help me reach great places," Michael Hoots, Business major, said with a smile.

Students were called up by department to receive their degree, and took a picture on their way down from the stage. Pictures are now available for purchase.

Those students who earned a 3.5 GPA or higher earned honors.

After all names were called and many congratulations were given, Carole Booms, the Director of Alumni and Annual Giving, led those assembled in the Alumni Pledge.

Once graduates took their pledge, they were asked to sing-a-long with Barbara Wiltsie, Assistant Professor of Music, to the Alma Mater.



Madonna grads ready for their futures