April 20, 2022
Purdue’s annual rite of spring: Happy grads to cross Elliott stage during spring ceremonies
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — The small steps they’ve taken over the past few years will soon culminate for many Purdue University students. They will graduate into the next phases of their lives.
Purdue University’s spring commencement is set for May 13-16, with seven ceremonies, each in the Elliott Hall of Music on campus.
Eligible to participate in the ceremonies are 8,131 students, which include 6,257 undergraduates, 1,180 master’s, 454 Doctor of Philosophy and 240 professional program candidates. A posthumous Doctor of Philosophy degree will be conferred to William L. Robinson, a former student in the Graduate School.
The ceremonies will take place as follow:
- Division I — Friday, May 13. 2:30 p.m. College of Agriculture and College of Engineering (Agricultural and Biological Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Material Science Engineering)
- Division II — Friday, May 13. 7 p.m. College of Engineering (Aeronautics and Astronautics, Biomedical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Construction Management Engineering, Electrical and Computer Engineering, Environmental and Ecological Engineering, Industrial Engineering, Multidisciplinary Engineering and Nuclear Engineering)
- Division III — Saturday, May 14. 9:30 a.m. College of Science and College of Veterinary Medicine (Undergraduate and Professional).
- Division IV — Saturday, May 14. 2:30 p.m. College of Liberal Arts and School of Management.
- Division V — Sunday, May 15. 9:30 a.m. College of Health and Human Sciences (Undergraduate and Professional).
- Division VI — Sunday, May 15. 2:30 p.m. College of Education, College of Pharmacy (Undergraduate and Professional) and Purdue Polytechnic Institute (Undergraduate and Professional).
- Division VII — Monday, May 16. 9:30 a.m. Graduate School (Master’s and Doctor of Philosophy — All schools and colleges).
Tickets are required for admission to Elliott Hall of Music. Doors open 90 minutes before each ceremony. All attendees will have any bags they are carrying checked at the door for entry into the Hall of Music. Purdue will offer an overflow venue in Stewart Center’s Fowler Hall for guests without tickets to view a livestream. All ceremonies will be livestreamed. For those who have tickets to attend in person, parking information is available online.
Purdue President Mitch Daniels will keynote each of the Friday, Saturday and Sunday ceremonies.
Dr. Deborah W. Knapp, Distinguished Professor in Comparative Oncology and director of Purdue’s Comparative Oncology Program in the College of Veterinary Medicine, will be the guest speaker for the Division VII ceremony. She is nationally and internationally recognized for her work in bladder cancer and comparative oncology.
Three individuals will receive honorary doctorates during commencement. Edmund O. Schweitzer III will receive an honorary Doctor of Engineering from the College of Engineering during the Division II ceremony, Jill Hruby will receive an honorary Doctor of Engineering from the College of Engineering during the Division I ceremony. John Krenicki Jr. will receive an honorary Doctor of Management from the School of Management during the Division IV ceremony.
- Edmund O. Schweitzer III is recognized as a pioneer in digital protection and holds the grade of Fellow in the IEEE. In 2012, Schweitzer received the Medal in Power Engineering, the highest award given by the IEEE, for his leadership in revolutionizing the performance of electrical power systems with computer-based protection and control.
Schweitzer received his bachelor's and master’s degrees in electrical engineering from Purdue and his doctoral degree from Washington State University. He founded Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories Inc. in 1982 to develop and manufacture digital protective relays and related products and services. SEL operates a facility in Discovery Park District at Purdue.
Schweitzer has written dozens of technical papers in the areas of digital relay design and reliability and holds more than 200 patents. In 2019, he was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame for his invention of the first digital protective relay.
Schweitzer and his wife, Beatriz, were honored in October 2020 with the renaming of the Purdue Polytechnic High School flagship campus for their $4 million commitment to programs and scholarships to support underrepresented students. Purdue Polytechnic High School Schweitzer Center at Englewood celebrated its first graduating class last year, with many attending Purdue.
• Jill Hruby was sworn in as the U.S. Department of Energy’s under secretary for nuclear security in July. She spent over 34 years at Sandia National Laboratories, serving at both the Materials and Engineering Sciences Center and the Homeland Security and Defense Systems Center.
Hruby was the inaugural Sam Nunn Distinguished Fellow at the Nuclear Threat Initiative from 2018-19. She has served on a variety of technical advisory committees and nonprofit organization boards.
In 2016, Hruby received the Suzanne Jenniches Upward Mobility Award from the Society of Women Engineers. In 2017, Business Insider named her the second most powerful female engineer.
• John Krenicki Jr. is a vice chairman with Clayton, Dubilier & Rice, one of the world's leading private equity investment firms. He joined Clayton, Dubilier & Rice in 2013 after a 29-year career at General Electric. He is a former vice chairman of GE and former president and CEO of GE Energy. His responsibilities included oversight of GE's oil and gas, power and water, and energy management businesses.
A Purdue alumnus, Krenicki received his master’s degree in management from Krannert Executive Education Programs.
Krenicki and his wife, Donna, made major gifts to establish the Krenicki Center for Business Analytics and Machine Learning, the John and Donna Krenicki Directorship of the Purdue Institute for Integrative Neuroscience and Krenicki Family Directorship in Inflammation, Immunology, and Infectious Disease. These institutes pursue research to alleviate suffering associated with trauma, disease, or disorders of the brain and nervous system. They also seek to diagnose and treat many of the world's most common diseases.
Student responders at each ceremony
Each undergraduate division will feature a student responder:
- Grace Hasler of Columbus, Indiana, who is to receive a Bachelor of Science degree from the College of Agriculture, will be the student responder in the Friday afternoon (Division I) ceremony.
- Jace Newell of Maple Grove, Minnesota, who will receive a Bachelor of Science degree from the College of Engineering, will be the student responder in the Friday afternoon (Division II) ceremony. Newell is also a student in the John Martinson Honors College.
- Tom Appenzeller of West Lafayette, Indiana, who will receive a Bachelor of Science degree from the College of Science, will be the student responder in the Saturday morning (Division III) ceremony.
- Jack Horoho of Warsaw, Indiana, who will receive a Bachelor of Science degree from the School of Management, will be the student responder in the Saturday evening (Division IV) ceremony.
- Parikshit Pawar of Austin, Texas, who will receive a Bachelor of Science degree from the College of Health and Human Sciences, will be a student responder in the Sunday morning (Division V) ceremony.
- Jacqueline Krutsch of Evanston, Illinois, will receive a Bachelor of Arts degree from the College of Education in the Sunday afternoon (Division VI) ceremony. Krutsch is also a student in the John Martinson Honors College.
Top student awards
The Flora Roberts Award and G.A Ross Award are Purdue’s two most prestigious honors for the university’s outstanding senior woman and outstanding senior man.
Roy S. Ramirez of San Jose, Costa Rica has received the G.A. Ross Award. Ramirez graduated from Purdue with a Bachelor of Science degree in aeronautical and astronautical engineering in December 2021. He minored in management and French. Read more about Ramirez’s work online.
This award is presented annually to an outstanding man in the graduating class and is made possible through a gift from Ross, a devoted alumnus and benefactor of Purdue from the Class of 1916. The recipient receives a $2,000 award, medallion and his name permanently inscribed on the award marker on the Purdue Engineering Mall.
Emma G. Gausman of Batesville, Indiana, has received the Flora Roberts Award. Gausman is receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in psychological sciences and a Bachelor of Science degree in speech, language and hearing sciences. Watch a video about Gausman online.
The award is presented annually to the outstanding senior woman to honor her scholarship, leadership, character and service to the university community. The award was made possible through a bequest of Flora Roberts of the Purdue Class of 1887. The recipient receives a $2,000 award, medallion, and her name permanently inscribed on the award marker on the Purdue Engineering Mall.
About Purdue University
Purdue University is a top public research institution developing practical solutions to today’s toughest challenges. Ranked in each of the last four years as one of the 10 Most Innovative universities in the United States by U.S. News & World Report, Purdue delivers world-changing research and out-of-this-world discovery. Committed to hands-on and online, real-world learning, Purdue offers a transformative education to all. Committed to affordability and accessibility, Purdue has frozen tuition and most fees at 2012-13 levels, enabling more students than ever to graduate debt-free. See how Purdue never stops in the persistent pursuit of the next giant leap at https://purdue.edu/.
Writer: Margaret Mowrer
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