LMU AWARDS 348 DEGREES AT WINTER COMMENCEMENT
December 19, 2011 - Harrogate, Tennessee — Lincoln Memorial University (LMU) President B. James Dawson conferred the degrees of 348 students on Saturday. Family and friends of nearly 400 students participated in the commencement ceremony held in Tex Turner Arena, including160 Educational Specialist Degree (EdS) graduates whose degrees were awarded in July.
During the ceremony LMU bestowed its highest honor, The Lincoln Diploma of Honor, on U.S. Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood. The award is in recognition of his leadership and dedication in establishing the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial commission and introducing legislation in Congress that would fund Bicentennial activities. LaHood, who served in the U.S. Congress for 14 years prior to his Cabinet appointment, is a strong advocate for preserving the legacy of President Abraham Lincoln.
LaHood co-chaired the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission with Senator Richard Durbin. The 14-member federal Commission was created by Congress to focus on planning and commemorating the 200th birthday of the United States’ 16th President on February 12, 2009. The commission served for ten years, from 2000 to 2010, though LaHood stepped down in 2009 when he joined President Obama’s cabinet.
Fellow Lincoln Diploma of Honor recipient retired Rhode Island Chief Justice Frank Williams was on hand to present the award to LaHood. Williams served with the Secretary on the Bicentennial Commission. LaHood also addressed the graduates at the ceremony.
“Graduates, I’m here to say that this is a spirit our nation must rekindle. And who better to fulfill that obligation than you, the newest alumnae of Lincoln Memorial University?” LaHood told the Class of 2011 during his speech. “President Lincoln and General Howard sought to build a great university for the people of Appalachia for the same reason they saw America as ‘the last best hope of earth.’ Because we’re not a national community that says ‘you’re on your own.’ We’re a people that says ’we‘re all in this together.’ I ask you to carry that idea with you. Deliver it to the generations that follow. America’s future depends on it and on you. And looking into your faces, I know that future is bright.”
Lincoln Memorial University is a values-based learning community dedicated to providing educational experiences in the liberal arts and professional studies. The main campus is located in Harrogate, Tennessee. For more information about the undergraduate and graduate programs available at LMU, contact the Office of Admissions at 423-869-6280 or e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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