Congratulations to the Class of 2023!
It’s Commencement Day!
Earlier today, the College conferred degrees on nearly 2,200 students at beautiful Commencement exercises held at the iconic Radio City Music Hall in midtown Manhattan.
Once again, two ceremonies were held to accommodate the large graduating class and their happy families and friends eager to see this wonderful milestone in their lives. Both events were warm, joyous, and incredibly uplifting.
We were honored to have two terrific keynote speakers. Bronx Borough President Vanessa Gibson spoke in the morning and New York State Assemblymember Kenny Burgos spoke in the afternoon.
As fantastic as our keynote speakers were, the person who stole the show was Kelsey Tavarez, a member of the graduating class (Associate in Criminal Justice) who flawlessly sang The Star-Spangled Banner at both ceremonies. All agree that she was absolutely amazing.
The 1,007 graduates participating in the morning ceremony completed programs of study in the School of Allied Health Professions, School of Education, School of Hospitality Management (and Culinary Institute of New York), School of Information Technology, and School of Nursing.
The Grand Marshal was Dr. Ed Schneiderman, a valued member of staff for 33 years who currently serves as Assistant Vice President for Institutional Research and Reporting.
The afternoon ceremony conferred degrees on 325 graduate students from the Monroe’s King Graduate School, as well as 864 undergraduate students from the School of Business and Accounting and School of Criminal and Social Justice. Maria Ortiz, a beloved Student Services Advisor who has been with Monroe for 32 years, led the processional as Grand Marshal.
This year’s Commencement was dedicated to Dr. Donald Simon, a beloved member of the College community who passed earlier this winter.
Dr. Simon was with the College for more than 40 years and was the “architect” of our modern Commencement ceremonies. Indeed, he was the voice and face of Commencement for many, many years before stepping down as the emcee last year. Vice President Jackie Ruegger now has that role. President Marc Jerome honored Dr. Simon in his remarks, moving everyone there – especially Dr. Simon’s son who was in attendance.
Both ceremonies highlighted Monroe’s 90th anniversary this year. Founded in 1933, the institution now known as Monroe College started as a secretarial school in the West Farms section of the Bronx with seven students.
Today, Monroe educates 8,000 students each year, offering Certificate, Associate, Bachelor’s, and Master’s degree programs from New York campuses in the Bronx and New Rochelle, as well as in the Caribbean nation of Saint Lucia. Students may also pursue degree programs through Monroe Online.
Our thanks to all who worked tirelessly behind the scenes the last several months to make Commencement such a wonderful event. We also appreciate the partnership of the Radio City Music Hall team and the many valued, trusted vendors we rely on year after year.
Congratulations again, graduates!