December graduates receive Purdue degrees

December 15, 2013  

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Loretta H. Rush, a Purdue alumna who in 2012 became Indiana's 108th Supreme Court Justice, keynoted the university's winter commencement ceremonies Sunday (Dec. 15) on campus.

Two ceremonies took place in Elliott Hall of Music. In a morning ceremony, graduates from the colleges of Agriculture, Education, Engineering and Liberal Arts received their degrees. Those from the colleges of Health and Human Sciences, Pharmacy, Science, Technology and Veterinary Medicine, and the School of Management, did so during an afternoon ceremony.

Rush keynoted West Lafayette ceremonies at which there were 2,828 students who were degree candidates, including 1,741 undergraduates, 454 doctoral students, 624 master's students, three education specialist and six professional degree-seekers.

"This is not just an exciting time for these students, but an exciting time for our larger communities," she said. "With nearly 3,000 Boilermakers poised to make a difference in the world the possibilities are limitless. Graduation is a time to reflect on accomplishments, but also a time of hope when these students are faced with many choices about what they will do to make the world a better place. I am glad to be a part of their special day." 

Rush was appointed to Indiana's high court in Sept. 2012 by then-Gov. and current Purdue President Mitch Daniels. Before that, the 1980 Purdue graduate who went on to graduate with honors from Indiana University's Maurer School of Law in Bloomington, served 14 years as Tippecanoe Superior Court 3 judge. She presided over a court with juvenile jurisdiction and also assisted in the creation of the Tippecanoe County Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) program. She helped initiate, develop and sustain more than 25 youth programs in the county.

Rush spent 15 years in general practice, specializing in civil litigation, family law, business, personal injury, corporate, probate and worker compensation cases. She was president of the Indiana Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges; chair of the Juvenile Justice Improvement Committee; and served on the Indiana Supreme Court Judicial Technology and Automation Committee.

Among her current involvements, she is chair of the Commission on Improving the Status of Children in Indiana and the Indiana Conference for Legal Education Opportunity. She also serves on the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges and was appointed to the National Judicial Leadership Summit on the Protection of Children.

Rush was selected as one of Indianapolis Business Journal's 2013 Women of Influence. In 2003, she received the Robert J. Kinsey Award as Indiana's Juvenile Judge of the Year.

Commencement videos will be available for $30 per DVD. Order forms can be obtained at the Loeb Playhouse box office, online at, or by calling 765-494-3933. Forms may be submitted after the ceremony within two weeks of the event. 

Writer: Jim Bush, 765-494-2077, 

Source: Christine DeHahn Pass, assistant registrar, 765-494-6163, 

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Photo gallery of the winter 2013 commencement:

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