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PBS executive Sepúlveda to speak at Monmouth’s 160th Commencement

05/04/2017
Public Broadcasting System senior executive Juan Sepúlveda will address about 280 graduates at Monmouth College’s 160th Commencement exercises, to be held at noon on May 14 on the Wallace Hall Plaza.

In the event of inclement weather, the ceremony will be held in the Huff Athletic Center.

Commencement exercises will conclude a weekend of activities that includes a baccalaureate service, the Honor Walk and the Senior Gala.

The May 14 commencement ceremony will also feature performances by the Monmouth College Wind Ensemble, Pipe Band and Chorale. Student speakers will include Emma Vanderpool of Frankfort, Ill., who is the College’s Student Laureate of the Lincoln Academy of Illinois, and Neriangela “Neddy” Velez of Chicago, president of the senior class.

The College’s baccalaureate service – which will be held at 2 p.m. May 13 in Dahl Chapel – will feature a message delivered by the Rev. Dr. Lewis Galloway, senior pastor of the Second Presbyterian Church in Indianapolis.

Both Commencement and baccalaureate will be live-streamed on the College’s main Facebook page.

At 3:30 p.m. May 13, members of the Class of 2017 will have the opportunity to participate in the Honor Walk on Wallace Hall Plaza. Seniors will present a specially minted commemorative coin to honor a family member, faculty or staff member, or friend who has provided inspiration, motivation and support during their Monmouth College career.

Graduates and their family members will attend the Senior Gala, which will be held 5:30 p.m. May 13 in Glennie Gymnasium.

The Senior Gala dinner will open with an invocation by Trevor Oetting of Monmouth. After a welcome from Devin King of Elgin, Ill., Emily Billin of Whitewater, Wis., will present the senior reflection. The seniors will also present Monmouth President Clarence R. Wyatt with the class gift. Members of the senior class will be presented with pins by the Alumni Association, welcoming them into the organization.

Monmouth’s Commencement speaker has been PBS senior vice president, station services, since 2014. The third Latino to be awarded a Rhodes Scholarship, Sepúlveda earned degrees from Harvard University, Oxford University and Stanford University Law School.

“Juan Sepúlveda is a living example that higher education is a pathway to success in this country,” said Monmouth President Dr. Clarence R. Wyatt. “Like many of us, he came from a modest background, and through education he’s become someone who makes a difference in our communities. Juan is a very energetic speaker, and he will offer our students a powerful message.”

In his role with PBS, Sepúlveda represents the perspective of the network’s independent member stations in the management and strategic direction of PBS to ensure that programs, products and services support each station’s connection to its community and audience. Sepúlveda also works closely with stations, the PBS Board of Directors, station affinity groups and other national public media organizations to focus on issues of sustainability.

Before joining PBS, Sepúlveda was Senior Advisor for Hispanic Affairs with the Democratic National Committee, and he was Executive Director of the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics.

Monmouth’s baccalaureate speaker is a graduate of Davidson (N.C.) College and earned Th.M. and D.Min. degrees from Union Presbyterian Seminary in Richmond, Va. Galloway has a strong commitment to mission and has developed many hands-on opportunities for community mission. Among other positions, he has served as President of the Interfaith Hunger Initiative of Indianapolis.