McPherson College conferred bachelor of arts and bachelor of science degrees to 130 students at the 134th Commencement Ceremony on Sunday, May 22, 2022, at McPherson Stadium.
In his final ceremony, which completed a nearly 40-year career at McPherson College, Dr. Bruce Clary, vice president for academic affairs, gave the homily. Dr. Clary has held the position of VPAA since 2014; however, during his career at McPherson College, he has worked in development and alumni affairs, as Spectator advisor, faculty chair, and professor of English. He is a 1977 graduate of McPherson College and earned a master’s degree in English from Wichita State University and a Ph.D. in English from Kansas State University. Dr. Clary will retire in July after 39 years of service to the college. In his homily, he praised students for persisting through unpredictable obstacles caused by the pandemic during the past two years.
“You have learned things that will serve you well the rest of your life,” said Dr. Clary. “The most lasting impact of education is the profound recognition that the world, life and other human beings are infinitely complex. The truly educated presume they know very little.”
The ceremony included the presentation and hooding of honorary doctorate recipients, Richard and Melanie Lundquist, who are among California’s most significant philanthropists. The faculty and Board of Trustees voted unanimously to bestow the Doctor of Humane Letters upon the Lundquists in 2020; however, disruptions related to the COVID-19 pandemic delayed the ceremonial hooding until this year’s commencement. During her commencement address, Melanie Lundquist surprised the college with the announcement of a $25 million gift. It is the largest gift ever received by a private liberal arts college in Kansas and among the largest of any Kansas college or university.
“At McPherson College, you learned how to think outside the building, not just the box – keep at it,” said Lundquist, in her address to the students. “At times, it will not be easy. Please, persevere. If someone tells you it cannot be done, you tell them to go sit in the corner and watch you do it.”
Names of the graduating class of 2022, the Commencement video, and photos of the day can be found at www.mcpherson.edu/graduation.
More about the historic gift announcement can be found at https://www.mcpherson.edu/2022/05/25m-surprise-gift-announced-during-mcpherson-college-commencement/