Och Tamale Fall 2020 - University of Redlands

Page 5


School of Education celebrates virtual commencement

Professor Pauline Reynolds (top left), chair of the Department of Leadership and Higher Education, raises a glass to toast the Class of 2020 during its virtual reception.


n the face of ongoing efforts against COVID-19, the University of Redlands School of Education awarded degrees to Class of 2020 graduates virtually on Aug. 8. Some graduates attended the online ceremonies wearing their caps and gowns. Many were in attendance in rooms with their partners, parents, grandparents, and children. Guests took part in the festivities from various countries across multiple continents and time zones. The event began with a schoolwide gathering, in which Robert A. and Mildred Peronia Naslund Endowed Dean Mario Martinez underscored the importance of a commencement celebration to acknowledge students’ achievements. He noted that despite the stress brought about by the events of 2020, the graduating class has also encountered victory and growth. “You are wired to think about the service to others,” he said. “We’re confident that your education at the University of Redlands has taught you the ideas of learning, equity, justice; it has also equipped you to find opportunity and challenge.”

The keynote speaker, Professor Andrew Wall, former Naslund Endowed Dean of the School of Education, gave his remarks following Martinez: “Resiliency and persistence are about small acts of daily living. They are about trying to make a difference by doing good things daily. While it may not change the system, it will matter for that one person. … If enough people take enough important steps, the world becomes the place we want to live in.” Following the main event, separate receptions were held by the departments of Teaching and Learning, Counseling and Human Services, and Leadership and Higher Education. Martinez, the department chairs, and faculty members all gave congratulatory remarks at the receptions. “It has been a weird summer, but it has been an amazing experience,” said Katherine Brookes Akridge ’20, who earned her master’s in educational administration. “And, I appreciate the effort people made to make [this celebration] special, too.”

“ If enough people take enough important steps, the world becomes the place we want to live in.” — Keynote speaker Professor Andrew Wall

Fall 2020 | 3