JACKSON, Tenn. – May 20, 2002 – Almost 400 Union graduates participated in commencement exercises Saturday, May 18, with 5000 friends and family members looking on. One of the brightest classes to pass through Union’s halls, according to Union President David S. Dockery, the May graduating class was the first class to have graduation on the West Lawn of the campus, painting a picturesque scene in front of the year-old Miller Tower, which was dedicated in the fall of 2001.
Earlier in the week, the graduates were honored with a luncheon and a welcome given by Union’s National Alumni Association President Steve Maroney. A dedication service was also held for all nursing graduates with Cheryl Stegbauer serving as keynote speaker for the Friday evening program. Stegbauer is professor and associate dean for academic programs in the College of Nursing at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in Memphis. Kenneth Hemphill, president of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, was speaker for the baccalaureate service held for graduates and families.
Though the actual graduation day brought unexpected cool temperatures and a brisk wind, spirits remained high among those in attendance.
Giving the commencement address was Millard Fuller, founder of Habitat for Humanity, who challenged the graduates to take every opportunity to make a difference in their world.
More than 775 students are expected to graduate this year from both the Jackson and Germantown campuses. The next graduation is scheduled for August.
Sara B. Horn,