University Communications

Immaculata University Prepares for Commencement 2009

Immaculata University´s 85th class will graduate at the commencement ceremony held at the Valley Forge Convention Center on Monday, May 11. Students graduating from the College of Undergraduate Studies, the College of LifeLong Learning, and the College of Graduate Studies will receive their diplomas at a 1:00 p.m. ceremony.
Immaculee Ilibagiza will address the graduates as the principal commencement speaker and will receive an honorary doctorate degree. During the ceremony, Sister Constance Touey, IHM, will receive the Immaculata Medal. The Immaculata Medal is the highest award Immaculata University confers. It is not awarded annually but only when the University wishes to acknowledge persons who have made a special contribution – humanitarian or spiritual – that inspires the Immaculata community. Awarded for the first time in 1976, the medal has been bestowed on men and women who have publicly exercised creative leadership, who have given evidence of sound scholarship in the arts, letters, sciences, and professions or who have served the University or the country in an extraordinary manner. Also during the Commencement ceremony, Sister Elaine Glanz, IHM, Ph.D., will be honored with the 2008-2009 Lindback Distinguished Teaching Award. Sister Elaine is professor of English and chair of the English/Communication Department at Immaculata.
Sister R. Patricia Fadden, IHM, EdD, president of Immaculata University, will confer degrees on 852 graduates. Twenty-nine will receive the Doctor of Education degree while 17 will be awarded the Doctor of Psychology degree. Of the remaining graduates, 155 will receive the Master of Arts degree; 8 will receive the Master of Science in Nursing degree; 292, the Bachelor of Arts degree; 2, the Bachelor of Music degree; 84, the Bachelor of Science degree; 241, the Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree; and 23, the Associate of Science degree.
Immaculee Ilibagiza
Commencement Speaker
And Honorary Doctorate Degree Recipient
As a native of her beloved Rwanda, Immaculee witnessed first-hand the brutality of war when, as a young adult in 1994, she and seven other woman hid in a tiny bathroom during the 3 month genocidal civil war. During this time, she strengthened her faith and discovered the power of prayer, praying constantly. Even after the grim discovery that none of her family survived, her new profound relationship with God helped her to emerge from her bathroom hideaway with a love so strong that she was able to seek out and ultimately forgive her family´s brutal murderers.
As an international speaker, Immaculee shares her life events as a message of Faith, Hope, and Forgiveness to others. In 2006, she wrote an autobiographical book detailing how she survived during the Rwandan Genocide and was featured on PBS and 60 Minutes. She was also Beliefnet.com´s 2006 Most Inspiring Person of the Year Nominee.
Sister Constance Touey, IHM
Immaculata Medal Recipient
As principal of St. Francis de Sales Grade School in West Philadelphia for 20 years, Sister Constance Marie has achieved so much for the students and for the school. One of her most notable programs is the Peace Table where students with disputes of any nature are asked to come to mediate their differences. The program has received local and national recognition including the Philadelphia Bar Foundation´s Apothaker Award, given to an organization that promotes peace and justice, and the National Catholic Education Association´s MacNamee Award, presented to an individual or school for leadership in promoting a vision of Catholic education that welcomes and serves cultural and economic diversity or serving students with diverse needs.
In addition, Sister has received many other awards related to education during her career.
Immaculata University, a Catholic, coeducational institution, is located 20 miles west of Philadelphia, south of the intersection of routes 30 and 352, between Paoli and Exton.
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4.20.2009