JACKSON, Tenn. – May 13, 2011– About 625 Union University students will receive their degrees at the university’s 186th annual spring commencement May 21.
The class is the largest in Union’s history. Union President David S. Dockery will be the keynote speaker for the ceremony, in which the last class to experience the Feb. 5, 2008, tornado will graduate.
That tornado caused massive damage to the Union campus, and led to an outpouring of generosity and support from donors and volunteers all over the country. As part of the May 21 commencement, Union will present the M.E. Dodd Denominational Service Award to Chester Harrison, pastor of First Baptist Church of Camden, Tenn. Following the tornado, Harrison led his church to donate $61,000 – or 11 percent of the church’s annual budget -- to Union’s rebuilding effort.
In addition to the Dodd Award, Union will also present the 100th Elizabeth Tigrett Medal to an outstanding senior. Previous Tigrett Medal winners will be on hand to celebrate the milestone.
The ceremony will begin at 6 p.m. on Union’s Great Lawn.