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graduation overview

On the eve of his retirement, President Charles L. Shearer confers degrees on the 240 members of the class of 2010, gives commencement address

Transylvania awarded bachelor of arts degrees to 240 seniors on May 29 in the final commencement ceremony for President Charles L. Shearer, who will retire from the presidency at the end of July after a 27-year tenure in the office.

A crowd of friends and family, faculty and trustees looked on from Old Morrison lawn as Shearer conferred the diplomas. In delivering the commencement address, he related his feelings at leaving office with his devotion to Transy students throughout his tenure.

“What has given me the greatest joy over the years has simply been knowing students,” Shearer said. “Because I am departing from the presidency, I feel as though I am part of the class of 2010 and that we are graduating together.”

Shearer came to Transylvania in 1979 as vice president for finance and was appointed president in 1983. His 27 years of service is the longest tenure of any president in the history of Kentucky’s oldest college, founded in 1780.

“Reflecting on the last 27 years as president, I can look back with the knowledge that I have given it my all,” Shearer said. “I will always cherish the relationships I have had with my colleagues on the faculty and staff, and I love this institution.”

Graduating senior and student speaker Tyler Murphy, a political science major from Flatwoods, Ky., urged his classmates to strive to solve the world’s problems.

“The education we have acquired over these past four years has empowered us to make a difference in this world,” Murphy said. “We do not fully understand the world’s problems, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t seek to solve them. That is our mission. This is our moment.”

Also during the ceremony, retiring art professor Dan S. Selter was awarded faculty emeritus status, and Shearer was awarded president emeritus status. Read more about this

Find out what some Transy graduates are planning to do after graduation here.

View more photos on Transy's graduation slide show.

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