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Last update: 6/3/08

[University of Wisconsin-Green Bay News Release]

For Immediate Release:

May 6, 2008

UW-Green Bay to graduate 25,000th at spring ceremony

GREEN BAY-The University of Wisconsin-Green Bay will pass a milestone this year, as the University's 25,000th graduate will receive a diploma at spring graduation.

The UW-Green Bay Spring 2008 Commencement ceremony is 11:30 a.m., Saturday, May 17, in the Kress Events Center on the campus, 2420 Nicolet Drive. There are 703 students set to graduate this semester with 575 participating in the ceremony.

Nancy Deprey was the first to walk across the stage as a UW-Green Bay graduate on June 1, 1970. Deprey, then Nancy Ably and first in line by alphabetical order, will present a gift pack from the Alumni Association to the lucky 25,000th grad.

Other graduation milestones were: 100th on Dec. 20, 1970; 1,000th on May 27, 1973; 5,000th on Aug. 31, 1979; 10,000th on June 1, 1989; 20,000th on Dec. 21, 2002.

This year's graduating class is particularly diverse, with students from 18 countries and three Native American nations.

Rain or shine, graduation will go on

Holding the spring 2008 commencement inside the new Kress Events Center means more parents, friends and family will watch the ceremony live and in person. The Kress Center holds slightly more than 4,000 spectators, compared to about 2,000 at the Weidner Center, the former location for indoor graduations.

The added capacity will mean only one ceremony this spring instead of holding two back-to-back.

Overflow space will be made available if necessary, and the graduation will be shown on closed-circuit television.

Niagara's Samuel Hansen is student speaker

Samuel Hansen, a mathematics student and self-described performance poet of Niagara, Wis., is this year's graduating class speaker.

Hansen, who will graduate with highest honors in Mathematics with a minor in Humanistic Studies, studied math and computer science and served as a nonfiction editor for the campus literary journal Sheepshead Review. He expects to pursue a master's of science degree in mathematics from the University of Nevada at Las Vegas.

Green Bay native is Outstanding Student

Rachael Southern, of Green Bay, is the May 2008 recipient of the Outstanding Student Award as selected by the UW-Green Bay Alumni Association.

Southern is a returning adult student who excelled in the classroom while holding down a full-time job and managing a family. She graduates summa cum laude with a major in Environmental Policy and Planning and minors in Economics, Environmental Science and Spanish. She plans to pursue a master's degree and perhaps a doctorate at UW-Madison.

'77 grad, environmentalist leads commencement address

Prof. David Kriebel of the University of Massachusetts Lowell, a 1977 summa cum laude graduate of UW-Green Bay and a leader of the student environmental movement of the '70s, will give the commencement address.

Kriebel came to UW-Green Bay, he recalls, as an "eco freak" determined to improve the planet. While at UW-Green Bay, he helped organize the student Union of Young Environmentalists, which promoted activism in voicing a new, Earth Day ethic.

He is now co-director of the Lowell Center for Sustainable Production, focusing his research on prevention of workplace injuries, cancer and non-malignant respiratory disease.

He holds a master's and doctorate from the Harvard School of Public Health.

College of Menominee Nation founder, president receiving honorary doctorate

S. Verna Fowler, College of Menominee Nation founder and nationally known advocate for the educational advancement of American Indians, will become the sixth person honored with a UW-Green Bay honorary doctorate.

Fowler helped start the growing college from scratch, from a few dozen students 15 years ago to more than 500 students today. She has worked in education as a teacher or administrator since 1964 and has served the Menominee Indian Tribe as superintendent of education, director of the credit and finance department and as executive director of the Menominee Restoration Committee. She has served the causes of higher education and tribal colleges at the national level, as well.

Nerad, Seidl named Chancellor's Award recipients

Green Bay's top school official and the man who helped secure the land where UW-Green Bay now stands will both receive Chancellor's Awards.

Daniel Nerad, outgoing superintendent of schools and learning for the Green Bay Area Public School District, is recognized with UW-Green Bay's highest community honor for his achievements as leader of the Green Bay Area Public School District and for helping promote the success of the Institute for Learning Partnership and Phuture Phoenix at UW-Green Bay.

Len Seidl, founder of Len Seidl Realty, is honored for his role more than 40 years ago in selecting and securing the scenic bayshore site that would become UW-Green Bay and for his continuing support of the institution since its inception.

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08-130 | Contact: Mike Heine, (920) 465-2526

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