Television news anchor Rick Garcia, Los Angeles City Controller Wendy Greuel, entertainment executive Jim Berk and JPL engineer Michael Gross are among the dignitaries who will address Cal State Northridge students when they graduate later this month.
An estimated 10,319 students—about 8,543 bachelor’s and 1,776 master’s degree candidates in a total of 64 fields—are eligible to take part in the ceremonies scheduled to begin the evening of Monday, May 23.
“Commencement is a moment to savor achievement and the transformative power of a college education,” said Cal State Northridge President Jolene Koester. “The proud faces of our newest graduates—and those of their families, friends and the university’s faculty and staff who have helped them along the way—remind me and the rest of us who work at California State University, Northridge of the importance of what we do in providing opportunities and a bright future for our students.”
The graduation celebration begins at 6 p.m. on Monday, May 23, with the Honors Convocation on the lawn in front of the Oviatt Library, located in the heart of the campus at 18111 Nordhoff St. in Northridge. More than 2,000 graduating students have been invited to participate.
This year’s convocation speaker is Rick Garcia, who attended CSUN in the early 1980s and is an Emmy-winning television news anchor for Los Angeles station KCAL Channel 9. In 2008, Garcia received the National Hispanic Media Coalition’s Excellence in Broadcast Journalism award. Garcia also has been honored by the Minorities in Broadcasting Training Program with a Striving for Excellence Award that recognized his career achievements and community contributions.
The formal commencement ceremonies are as follows:
• Students in the Mike Curb College of Arts, Media, and Communication will celebrate their graduation beginning at 8 a.m. on Tuesday, May 24, on the lawn in front of the Oviatt Library.
Entertainment executive, educator, philanthropist and Northridge alumnus Jim Berk will receive an honorary doctorate of fine arts during the ceremony. Berk, who received his bachelor’s in music from CSUN in 1981, is CEO of Participant Media, the company responsible for such socially relevant films as “An Inconvenient Truth” and “Waiting for Superman.” He began his career as an educator. He was recognized by the university in 2007 as a Distinguished Alumnus.
• The College of Science and Mathematics’ graduation ceremony is scheduled to begin at 3:30 p.m. on Tuesday, May 24, on the lawn south of Manzanita Hall near the southwest corner of campus near Nordhoff Street east of Etiwanda Avenue.
• The College of Health and Human Development will celebrate its students’ graduation at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, May 24, on the Oviatt Lawn.
• The College of Social and Behavioral Sciences’ graduation ceremony is scheduled to begin at 8 a.m. on Wednesday, May 25, on the Oviatt Library Lawn.
• Electrical engineering alumnus Michael A. Gross will address the graduates during the College of Engineering and Computer Sciences’ ceremony, which will take place at 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday, May 25, on Manzanita Hall Lawn.
Gross, who earned a bachelor’s degree from CSUN in 1996 and a master’s degree from the university in 2008, is the manager of the power and sensor systems section of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory at the California Institute of Technology.
• Los Angeles City Controller Wendy Greuel will address the College of Humanities’ graduates during their ceremony scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, May 25, the Oviatt Library Lawn.
Greuel served as a member of the Los Angeles City Council representing portions of the San Fernando Valley from 2002 to 2009, when she was elected Los Angeles City Controller. As controller, Greuel monitors spending by city officials and identifies and eliminates wasteful spending.
• The College of Business and Economics will celebrate its students’ graduation at 8 a.m. on Thursday, May 26, on the Oviatt Library Lawn.
• Students of the Michael D. Eisner College of Education will celebrate their graduation at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, May 26, on the lawn in front of the Oviatt Library.