Newman University to hold Spring 2016 graduation activities May 13-14

May 12, 2016

Newman University will stage a number of events May 13 and 14 to celebrate Fall 2015, Spring 2016, and Summer 2016 Graduates.

Nurses’ Pinning Ceremony – Friday, May 13, 4 p.m.
A Nurses’ Pinning ceremony will take place at 4 p.m., Friday, May 13 in Performance Hall, inside the De Mattias Fine Arts Center on the Newman campus. During the event, a tradition in the nursing discipline, the director of nursing will place nursing pins on graduate candidates’ lapels as a symbol of their completion of the BSN program. The ceremony will also feature the naming of the Distinguished BSN Graduate Award.

President’s Reception – Friday, May 13, 4:30 p.m.
The President’s Reception for graduating students, family members and friends will be 4:30 to 6 p.m. in the Dugan-Gorges Conference Center. Refreshments will be served.

Baccalaureate Mass – Friday, May 13, 7 p.m.
The Spring 2016 Baccalaureate Mass will be at 7 p.m. Friday, May 13, in the historic Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, 430 N. Broadway. The ceremony will include reflections by three Newman graduating students.

Undergraduate Commencement – Saturday, May 14, 10 a.m.
Spring 2016 Commencement for undergraduate students will take place at 10 a.m. on Saturday, May 14 at Central Community Church, 6100 W. Maple. The ceremony will include the awarding of degrees to 29 candidates for associate’s degrees, and 174 candidates for bachelor’s degrees.

Associate Professor of English Susan Crane-Laracuente received the 2015 Teaching Excellence Award.
Associate Professor of English Susan Crane-Laracuente received the 2015 Teaching Excellence Award.

The ceremony will also include the naming of the 2016 recipients of the Harvey J. Ablah Award and the Leona J. Ablah Award. The awards are presented each year to a graduating male and a graduating female student who exemplify the spirit of Newman University. The ceremony will also include an address by Newman University Associate Professor of English Susan Crane-Laracuente, Ph.D. Crane-Laracuente received the 2015 Newman University Teaching Excellence Award, an annual recognition to a full-time faculty member who has demonstrated an innovative or dynamic approach to courses, course revisions, and teaching techniques. The award recipient also has the honor of speaking at the following spring commencement ceremonies.

Honorary Degree – Robert L. and Rosalie Goebel
During Commencement, Newman officials will also bestow a Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa degree on Robert L. and Rosalie Goebel. The university awards honorary degrees to notable and accomplished members of the extended Newman community whose life and work reflect exemplary dedication to one of the university’s four Core Values: Catholic Identity, Culture of Service, Academic Excellence, and Global Perspective. The Goebels will be honored for Culture of Service.

Robert and Rosalie Goebel will receive honorary degrees at the Undergraduate Commencement Ceremony.

Robert is the son of Earl Goebel, founder and former president of Star Lumber & Supply Co., Inc. For many years Robert operated the business with his brother William, who passed away in 2006. Robert served as the chairman of the Star Lumber Board of Directors until January 2010 and still serves on the board.

The relationship between Newman, Goebel family members, family-owned businesses and related foundations began almost a half century ago, when Star provided materials for a removable wood basketball floor at Century II – which served as the Jets’ “home court” – then donated the floor to Century II in exchange for seven years’ free use of the facility by Newman. The Goebel family and Star Lumber have provided generous financial and material support to Newman ever since. They made a major gift to help build Ryan Library, and donated wood for the original 8-foot fence surrounding McCarthy Baseball Field, and for a larger fence when the facility was expanded. Star also provided many part-time jobs for Newman student-athletes. More recent gifts include materials for a press box and dugout. In recognition of their support, Robert was named an honorary alumnus, and in 1994 Robert and Rosalie received the Cardinal Newman Medal. Star Lumber was also inducted into the Newman Sports Hall of Fame in 2008 as a Newman booster.

Robert and Rosalie made a major gift to the Beyond 2000 campaign to build O’Shaughnessy Hall. They have also been generous supporters of the Laurie Bell Memorial Jet Open Golf Tournament and other Newman events. Since 2001, Robert and Rosalie have provided annual student scholarships through the Robert L. and Rosalie Goebel Endowed Scholarship. They have also made a significant gift to the current Facing Forward campaign.

In their personal lives, Rosalie has been an active member of the Kansas Women’s Golf Association for many years, where she is a rules official and has served on and led other golfing committees. She is also a volunteer judge for Music Theatre of Wichita’s annual Jester Awards. With Robert, she is active in Christ the King Parish, where she weekly serves as organist. Both Rosalie and Robert also support Junior Achievement, and for several years made service trips to Panama along with high school students through the Rotary Club of West Wichita.

Graduate Education Awards Luncheon – Saturday, May 14, Noon
A luncheon and awards ceremony for candidates for the Master of Education degree will take place at noon Saturday, May 14 at Botanica, 701 Amidon. Because the program is offered in locations across the state and online, the ceremony will feature various awards to Newman graduate education students from across Kansas.

 Occupational Therapy Assistant Pinning – Saturday, May 14, 2 p.m.
The annual Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA) Pinning ceremony will take place at 2 p.m. Saturday, May 14 in Performance Hall, inside the De Mattias Fine Arts Center. The ceremony honors the completion of coursework and the beginning of two professional internships for students in the program. Upon completion of the internships, students will receive their degrees in December 2016.

Graduate Commencement – Saturday, May 14, 3 p.m.
Spring 2016 Commencement for graduate students will take place at 3 p.m. on Saturday, May 14 at Central Community Church, 6100 W. Maple. The ceremony will include the awarding of degrees to 184 candidates for master’s degrees.

Live Streaming of Graduation

If you know of friends and family who would like to watch the graduations but can’t make it there, we’ve got you covered! Watch the live stream at for both undergraduate and graduate commencement ceremonies.