Southern Wesleyan University graduates Class of 2019 in two ceremonies
CENTRAL—Southern Wesleyan University held two graduation ceremonies May 3 on its campus in Central – a 10 a.m. ceremony for graduates of its on campus program and a 3 p.m. ceremony for graduates of its adult evening and online programs.
The graduation speaker was Dr. Lisa Harding, a 1988 Southern Wesleyan graduate and an internal medicine specialist at Foothills Internal Medicine in Easley.
Harding recalled how she became interested in the medicine and shared about how God has used her experiences. She encouraged graduates to “hang out with people who encourage you to be your best self.”
“At the end of my career, what I will remember the most are the relationships I had, the people I worked with and the patients I’ve served,” Harding said. “God provided me with an opportunity to serve Him and consequently find significance. Whatever is next for you as you move on from SWU, may you find His gift for you as well. This world needs you to live out your mission; it needs you to be good news.”
University President, Dr. Todd Voss told the graduates, “You represent a new generation of leaders who will inherit the challenges of a rapidly changing and conflicted world, a world that needs servant leaders with a mission, innovators who solve tough problems, professionals who exude integrity, and finally women and men who see the need to act as examples of Jesus Christ. You have an opportunity to become change agents in this world and we challenge you to start anew that process today.”
Highlights of the ceremony included Voss presenting Harding with an honorary doctorate of science degree, in recognition of her life impact and distinguished service in the health care role, and service to others in the community, demonstrating superior character in leadership.
Rev. Mike Hilson, chair of Southern Wesleyan’s Board of Trustees, gave the invocation at both ceremonies. Terry House, graduating senior and SGA president, read scripture at the morning ceremony and Katrina Gambrell, a master of science in management and leadership graduate from Seneca, read scripture during the afternoon ceremony. Dr. Ting Ting Han, assistant professor of chemistry, gave the benediction in the morning ceremony; and Dr. Priscilla Hammond, assistant professor of business, gave the benediction in the afternoon ceremony.
Music during the morning ceremony was provided by the University Brass Ensemble, and music during the afternoon ceremony was provided by the University Singers. Also, Prof. Jane Dill, chair of the university’s Fine Arts Division, played the organ during the ceremonies. Dr. Don Campbell, professor of music, led in the singing of the hymn, “In Christ Alone.” The City of Greenville Pipes and Drums led the processional for both ceremonies.
In other graduation highlights, on May 2, the university held its Baccalaureate service, featuring a “ceremony of the servants” in which graduates received towels – a symbol of Christian service – embroidered with the Southern Wesleyan University seal. At the same time, the graduating seniors placed medallions they were presented as freshmen during a “Passing the Mantle” ceremony. These medallions, with messages from the graduates written on the back, will be presented to incoming freshmen in August. Rev. Wayne Otto, founding pastor of Providence Church in Summerville, gave the Baccalaureate sermon.
Florence native Delore Scott was among the graduates, earning a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration.