Union University
Union University Dept of History

Department News




Nine History Majors Graduate at Union’s Spring Commencement Exercises

May 21, 2011

Nine history majors were among the students who participated in Union University’s spring commencement exercises on May 21, 2011. Several students with history minors also graduated. Union University President David Dockery delivered the commencement address on the topic of “Remember.” Among other things he called on the class of 2011, the last to have experienced the devastating tornado of February 5, 2008, to remember God’s sustenance from that day to the present and the community’s outpouring of help in rebuilding the university in the aftermath of the tornado. On behalf of the Class of 2011, Senior Class President Betsy Davis, who majored in both history and English, presented to Dr. Dockery a framed version of his hand-written notes outlining plans for reopening the university following the tornado, and a monetary gift for the rebuilding of a tornado-destroyed campus pavilion known as the Sugar Shack.

In addition to Betsy’s prominent role in the commencement ceremonies, there were two other points of special significance for the history department at this year’s spring graduation. One was Dr. Keith Bates, the 2011 Faculty Member of the Year, carrying the university mace during the commencement exercises. The other was Kate Cline, a double major in history and English, receiving the school’s 100th Tigrett Medal. The medal, first given in 1912, is the highest honor that the university bestows on a graduating senior each year.

History majors graduating with Bachelor of Arts degrees were: Elizabeth Blevins, Hunter Bragg, Kate Cline, Betsy Davis, Katie Mohler, and Mary Alisa Techentin. Bachelor of Science degrees were granted to history majors Travis Lutz, Elizabeth McCrary, and Kevin Reid.


Graduating Phi Alpha Theta History Honor Society members share a moment together prior to Union’s graduation ceremony on May 21, 2011. They are: (left to right) Travis Lutz, Elizabeth McCrary, Kevin Reid, Mary Alisa Techentin, Katelyn O’Roark, and Kate Cline.


Graduating Phi Alpha Theta History Honor Society members take a break from their preparations for Union’s commencement services to share a moment together on May 21, 2011. They are: (left to right) Katie Mohler, Ericka King, and Jonathan Lafitte.


History majors Elizabeth Blevins (also a member of Phi Alpha Theta History Honor Society) and Hunter Bragg smile for the camera prior to Union’s commencement exercises on May 21, 2011.


Senior Class President Betsy Davis, who double majored in history and English, holds a Union University banner to carry at the head of the graduation procession on May 21, 2011.


Students move forward in the processional with Senior Class President Betsy Davis carrying a Union University banner at the front. History majors in the photo are: Betsy Davis (face hidden by banner she is carrying); Elizabeth Blevins (third student from the front of those whose faces can be seen); and Hunter Bragg (fifth student from the front of those whose faces can be seen).


Union University students deal with a wind gust as they march in the school’s graduation processional. Graduating history major Mary Alisa Techentin turns her face into the wind as she marches (fourth student from the front of those whose faces can be seen).


History minor Katelyn O’Roark (seventh in line from the front of those whose faces can be seen) smiles at a friend as she marches in the Union University processional on May 21, 2011. History majors Travis Lutz (first in line of those whose faces can be seen) and Elizabeth McCrary (third in line from the front of those whose faces can be seen) also participate in the processional.


Dr. Keith Bates, Union University’s Faculty of the Year Award winner, stands on the graduation stage after placing the university mace on its stand on May 21, 2011.


A crowd of approximately 6,000 people join together at the 2011 spring graduation exercises on May 21, 2011.


Union University President Dr. David Dockery welcomes the approximately 6,000 attendees to Union University’s spring graduation services on May 21, 2011.


Senior Class President Betsy Davis, a history and English major, listens to Union President Dr. David Dockery deliver his spring commencement address on May21, 2011.


History and English major Kate Cline, who is wearing a blue and red Phi Alpha Theta History Honor Society honor cord, listens to Union President Dr. David Dockery talk on the theme of “Remember” in his commencement address on May 21, 2011.


History major Hunter Bragg listens to Union University President Dr. David Dockery present the school’s spring commencement address on the theme of “Remember” on May 21, 2011.


Union University President Dr. David Dockery delivers the spring commencement address on the topic of “Remember” at the school’s graduation services on May 21, 2011.


Senior Class President Betsy Davis (front row, left) takes a look at her Union University diploma during the conferring of degrees segment of Union’s graduation services on May 21, 2011.


History major Elizabeth McCrary does a thumbs-up after receiving her baccalaureate degree on May 21, 2011.


History major Katie Mohler receives her diploma from Union University President Dr. David Dockery at the spring graduation services on May 21, 2011.


History major Kevin Reid walks toward the stage on May 21, 2011, in preparation to receive his college diploma at Union’s commencement exercises.


Senior Class President Betsy Davis on May 21, 2011, gives Union President Dr. David Dockery a framed version of the notes he used to prepare for Union University’s recovery from the tornado that struck the campus on February 5, 2008.


Senior Class President Betsy Davis shows an architect’s drawing of a planned pavilion during Union’s 2011 spring graduation as she announces that the senior class gift will be to support its construction. Union President Dr. Dockery listens appreciatively as Betsy makes her announcement. The new structure will replace a pavilion known as the Sugar Shack that was destroyed in the tornado of February 5, 2008.


Union University President Dr. David Dockery makes his final remarks at Union’s spring commencement exercises on May 21, 2011.


Dr. David Thomas (left to right), history major Kate Cline, and Dr. Keith Bates stand together following Union’s graduation services on May 2, 2011.


Senior Class President Betsy Davis (left to right), a double major in history and English, shares the joy of graduation with her mother and grandmother following Union’s commencement exercises on May 21, 2011.


Phi Alpha Theta History Honor Society member and graduating senior Ericka King joins with Dr. Stephen Carls for a photo following Union University’s 2011 graduation ceremonies on May 21.