Former Texas secretary of state to address grads

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    About 1,300 Horned Frogs are scheduled to walk across the stage at this year’s spring commencement, a university official said.

    Margaret Kelly, executive director for community projects, said the spring commencement ceremony is broken up into two parts, a morning ceremony and an afternoon ceremony.

    About 702 Horned Frogs will graduate at the morning ceremony where they will receive their degrees from the M.J. Neeley School of Business, College of Education, College of Science and Engineering or Master of Liberal Arts Program, Kelly said.

    About 660 students are scheduled to receive their degrees at the afternoon ceremony from the AddRan College of Humanities and Social Sciences, Brite Divinity School, College of Communication, College of Fine Arts or Harris College of Nursing and Health Sciences, Kelly said.

    Unless the graduate earned a double degree, the individual does not have to attend both ceremonies, said Nancy Styles, executive assistant to the vice chancellor for marketing and communication. Some graduates decide to walk across the stage for both degrees, but it is not required.

    This year 14 students earned a double degree and one student earned a triple degree, Kelly said.

    Another number that stands out is 15 – the number of potential 4.0 GPAs this spring, Kelly said.

    Roger Williams, a ’72 TCU graduate, is the designated speaker this year, Kelly said. Williams, who was selected by Chancellor Victor Boschini, served as Texas’ 105th secretary of state and is currently the chairman of Texas Victory of 2008, an effort to encourage voters to elect Republican candidates to office.

    This year TCU will give two honorary degrees at commencement. These degrees are a prestigious award given to individuals elected through a nomination committee, Kelly said.

    Sandra Brown, a TCU graduate and author of 56 New York Times best-sellers, is one of the recipients selected through a nomination committee, said Kelly who said there have been periods as long as 10 years where no one received an honorary award.

    John Merrill, a Texas A&M graduate and previous director of the TCU Ranch Management program for 33 years, is the second recipient of this year’s honorary degree.

    The traditional Chancellor’s Reception, which takes place between the two ceremonies at the Dee J. Kelly Alumni and Visitors Center, is an opportunity for family, friends and faculty to socialize in an atmosphere filled with food, music and photos, Kelly said.

    “This is a wonderful capstone experience,” said Boschini, who believes commencement is important for both the graduate and the graduate’s family.

    Kelly said seniors should begin the graduation process at the beginning of the individual’s last semester at TCU to avoid stress.

    The fees for graduation, which have not changed since last year, are $55 for an undergraduate degree, $65 for a master’s degree and $100 for a doctoral degree.

    The additional costs for those with a graduate degree are $55 for thesis archiving, $65 for dissertation archiving, and $45 for optional copyright filing through UMI.

    Graduation fees will pay for the cost of the diploma and the cap and gown rental or for the cost of mailing the diploma if the graduate opts not to attend commencement.

    Horned Frogs can pick up their cap and gown from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Friday, May 9, or 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Saturday, May 10, at the Daniel-Meyer Coliseum.

    Each graduate may invite an unlimited number of guests; the only reserved seats are for those with special needs.

    Appointments for reserved seating for guests with special needs must be made through the office of special projects at 817-257-7802, said Styles, who said no wheelchairs are available on site.

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