Contact: Lynn Stewart, Centenary News Service

Centenary College Caps its 175th Anniversary Year with Commencement 2000; Mrs. Barbara Bush to Speak, 200 to Graduate Saturday, May 6 at Hirsch Coliseum

Barbara P. Bush Barbara P. Bush

SHREVEPORT, LA -- Centenary College will conclude its year-long 175th anniversary celebration with special Year 2000 graduation exercises at 10:30 a.m. Saturday (May 6, 2000) in Hirsch Coliseum, including a commencement address by former First Lady Barbara Bush.

The annual ceremony has moved from its usual location in the Centenary Gold Dome to the coliseum to accommodate the families and friends of graduates and the public who wish to hear Mrs. Bush. An estimated 5,000 people are expected to attend, based on requests for advance tickets. Although the event is free, a ticket is required for admission. A few standby tickets may be available Saturday morning at the Hirsch Coliseum box office, college officials said.

Some 200 students are candidates for degrees this year, including about 150 bachelor's degrees and 50 master's. Ten students will graduate summa cum laude with grade-point averages of 3.9 or higher. Other honor graduates are 18 who have earned magna cum laude (3.7 to 3.89 GPA) and 22 who will be graduated cum laude (3.5 to 3.69 GPA).

Honorary doctorates will be awarded to Mrs. Bush and to two others: author Ernest J. Gaines of Lafayette, La., and Centenary trustee Samuel P. Peters of Shreveport. The college will also recognize Dr. James Farrar, professor of health and exercise science, who will retire after 23 years at Centenary.

Members of the platform party in addition to speakers and honorees will be William G. Anderson, chairman of the Centenary Board of Trustees; Dr. Kenneth L. Schwab, president; Dr. Earl W. Fleck, provost and dean of the college; Dr. Jack O'Dell, chaplain; Angela G. Watkins, class agent for the Class of 2000; and Dawson B. Taylor, president of the Student Government Association. Music will be provided by the Centenary Wind Ensemble, conducted by Dr. Thomas Stone, and the Centenary College Choir, directed by Dr. Will Andress.

Dr. Lee Morgan will serve as grand marshal and Dr. Rosemary Seidler as faculty marshal. Ushers will include members of the Maroon Jackets honor organization.

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