DULUTH, MN - The College of St. Scholastica will conduct its fall 2012 commencement at noon Saturday, Dec. 15, in the Reif Gymnasium on campus. It will be a combined baccalaureate, master's and doctoral ceremony with 399 candidates for graduation.
A total of 271 bachelor's degrees will be awarded. The most numerous baccalaureate majors are, in order: Nursing, Nursing Post-Bachelor's, Social Work, Management, Organizational Behavior, Accounting, and Health Information Management.
A total of 105 master's degrees, 19 doctoral degrees and four graduate certificates will be awarded. The most numerous graduate studies majors are, in order: Health Information Management, Teaching, Business Administration, Dual Degree (Management and Business Administration), Management, Information Technology Leadership, Doctor of Physical Therapy, and Doctor of Nursing Practice.
The Duluth Scottish Heritage Pipers will lead the graduates in the processional and recessional. Members of the American Indian Drum Group will perform an Honor Song to open the ceremony. Tenor Bill Bastian, an instructor in the Department of Music, will sing "America the Beautiful," accompanied by the St. Scholastica String Orchestra.
Jessica Durbin, a member of the College's Board of Trustees, will give the commencement address. She graduated with highest honors from the College of St. Scholastica in 1998 and graduated from the University of Minnesota Law School, where she was a Justice Harry A. Blackmun Scholar, in 2001. She joined the law firm of Johnson, Killen & Seiler, P.A. in Duluth that same year.
She specializes in the areas of labor, employment and employment discrimination law, business law, and civil litigation. She is a member of the Minnesota State Bar Association, including the Labor and Employment Law Section, and the Eleventh District Bar Association. She serves on the Board of Directors of the Duluth Regional Care Center and as chair of the Eleventh District Bar Association Ethics Committee. Jessica is active in the Northeastern Minnesota Chapter of Minnesota Women Lawyers, of which she was a charter member, and she was also a member of the 2004-2005 Leadership Duluth class. She currently serves on the College's Pre-Law Advisory Board and Centennial Steering Committee.
Joan Purrington will give the student address. She is graduating with a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree. She is a graduate of the University of Minnesota with a bachelor of science degree in physical therapy and has a master of education degree from St. Mary's University. She is in a private physical therapy practice and is working as a case reviewer for HSM, Inc. - a health services management company - and in the aquatic therapy department at Regions Hospital in St. Paul.
Tickets are required for all guests at Commencement. After the ceremony, the new alumni will celebrate at a reception in the lower level of Tower Hall.
The College of St. Scholastica is regularly recognized as one of the finest colleges in the Midwest. The 2013 "America's Best Colleges" survey by U.S. News & World Report magazine ranks St. Scholastica in the top tier of Midwestern universities. The Washington Post has rated St. Scholastica as one of the nation's 100 "hidden gems" among U.S. colleges and universities.