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Dear Staff and Faculty,

On Sunday, May 20, Ithaca College held its 123rd Commencement, an occasion that brought more than 12,000 students, alumni, families, and friends to our campus to celebrate the graduation of our Class of 2018.

I want to reach out now to offer my warmest appreciation to our staff and faculty for making this ceremony -- and the many other Commencement-related weekend events -- so special, and express my deep gratitude for all of your work throughout the academic year to support our students and their Ithaca College experience.

Sunday’s Commencement ceremony represented the spectacular effort of hundreds of people, and I would like to acknowledge and applaud the work of the following members of our campus community and their departments:

My heartfelt thanks goes to the co-chairs of the Commencement Committee -- Dave Prunty, executive director of auxiliary services and Doreen Hettich-Atkins, director of strategic planning and administration -- along with the entire committee, for their incredible effort. They began planning in earnest for this event in December, and worked diligently and creatively to construct a tight, thoughtful ceremony that was deeply student-centered.

I want to thank Vikki Levine, registrar, and her team, as well as Margie Malepe, director of Campus Center and event services, and her team, especially Rachel Ash and Paul Galgoczy. From the provost’s office, MaryAnn Taylor and Stephanie St. John have my sincere gratitude for leading efforts around the academic program.

My thanks to Bill Kerry, public safety director, for taking on the incredible task of preparing his staff to ensure a smooth event. Of course there was an enormous amount of work done as well by our facilities department, particularly the teams led by Matt Walters, Ernie McClatchie, and Dave Heichel. Thank you.

Finally, I want to offer my gratitude to the 200+ faculty members who attended Sunday’s ceremony. I was thrilled by your presence at and engagement in this milestone moment. I deeply appreciate your support of our students and of our college.

Though this was Ithaca College’s 123rd Commencement -- it was my very first as president of this institution. It was an extraordinary and meaningful event for me, personally, and I am filled with such pride when I think about our wonderful learning community and the strong, collaborative work so many of you invested in this celebration and in our students. You continually demonstrate the very best of Ithaca College. Thank you.

All my best,

Shirley M. Collado
President, Ithaca College

Sent via email May 22, 2018.