College to Celebrate Commencement May 19; Alumna to Earn Honorary Degree

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

More than 300 students are expected to earn degrees Saturday, May 19, at Westminster College's 158th commencement ceremonies.  A baccalaureate service will be held at 10:30 a.m. in Orr Auditorium with commencement at 2:30 p.m. on the Senior Terrace of Old Main.

The baccalaureate message, "Ignition," will be given by the Rev. Dr. Scott Black Johnston, senior pastor of Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church in New York City and former professor of preaching and worship at Austin (Texas) Presbyterian Theological Seminary. 

The class of 2012 selected Miltiadis Constantine to give the senior address.  A public relations and political science major, Constantine is a son of Thomas and Vasiliki Constantine of Poland, Ohio, and a graduate of Poland Seminary High School.

In case of rain, the commencement ceremony will be held in Memorial Field House. Contact Gabriella Budai, executive secretary in the Office of Academic Affairs, at (724) 946-7122 for more information.

Dr. Kim R. Dunbar '80 to Earn Honorary Degree

The commencement ceremony will include the conferring of an honorary degree, doctor of science, honoris causa, on Dr. Kim R. Dunbar, Davidson Professor of Science at Texas A&M University, one of America's premiere chemists, and a 1980 Westminster graduate.

She will share her thoughts on "Blue Skies: The Value of a Liberal Arts Education."

Dunbar, who earned a Ph.D. in inorganic chemistry from Purdue University, did post-doctoral research at Texas A&M, then joined the Michigan State University faculty, where she rose to the rank of University Distinguished Professor.

Since her return to Texas A&M in 1999, she has become world-renowned for her research in several areas of physical and inorganic chemistry, including breakthroughs in organic/inorganic composite materials, molecular magnetism, and metal-based chemotherapy.

She is the author of more than 300 publications that include scientific articles, conference papers, reviews, and book chapters; serves as associate editor of Inorganic Chemistry; and is past secretary and chair of the American Chemical Society's Division of Inorganic Chemistry.

Dunbar has been honored with distinguished alumna awards from Westminster College and Purdue University.  Her professional honors include an Alfred P. Sloan Foundation fellowship; a Camille and Henry Dreyfus teacher-scholar award; and fellowships in the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Institute of Chemists, and the American Chemical Society.

About Westminster College...
Founded in 1852 and related to the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), Westminster College ranks first in the nation as "Best College for Women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math," according to Forbes.com. Westminster, a top-tier liberal arts college, ranks third in graduation rate performance, according to U.S. News Best Colleges guide. Westminster ranked 6th among liberal arts colleges in social mobility, according to the Washington Monthly College Guide, and is one of the most affordable national liberal arts colleges in Pennsylvania. Westminster is also honored as one of "The Best 376 Colleges" by The Princeton Review, and is named to the President's Honor Roll for excellence in service learning.

Nearly 1,600 undergraduate and graduate students benefit from individualized attention from dedicated faculty while choosing from 42 majors and nearly 100 organizations on the New Wilmington, Pa., campus. Visit www.westminster.edu/advantage to view "Advantage: Westminster" A Strategic Plan 2010-2020.


Dr. Kim Dunbar




Dr. Scott Black Johnston