Date: May 16, 2014
Department: News & Public Information
"Charlton College of Business students have put UMass Dartmouth on the national spotlight for excellence," said UMass Dartmouth Chancellor Divina Grossman in her address to the Class of 2014. "With the adventurous spirit of a Corsair, you have sailed head first toward the horizon - confident that you will meet every challenge and seize every opportunity."
Business leader Robert F. Leduc '78 was the main speaker and received an honorary degree at the Charlton College of Business ceremony. Mr. Leduc was recently appointed an advisor to Advent International, one of the world's largest private equity firms, following a 36-year career at United Technologies Corporation.
"Question, question, question, integrity, not be afraid to fail, make sure you respect your colleagues and your customers...the building blocks of leadership," said Mr. Leduc, who also made an appeal to the Class of 2014 for a commitment to civic engagement. "There is no greater cause than to help those in need and those less fortunate. Your career will enable you to be successful and you can share your wealth. We have an obligation to humanity to take care of one another."
Chief Administrative Officer of Babson College and former UMass Building Authority Executive Director Katherine Craven received the Chancellor's Medal during today's ceremony. The Chancellor's Medal, awarded at the sole discretion of the Chancellor, recognizes individuals and organizations whose contributions to society represent the core values of the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth -- lifelong learning, innovative research, and civic engagement. Katherine Craven has played a leading role in the construction and renovation of K-12 schools and University of Massachusetts facilities across the state for the past decade.
Nikita Rao, MBA '14 was chosen to address her fellow graduates as the Student Commencement Speaker. As a double concentrator in marketing and finance in her UMass Dartmouth MBA program, Nikita Rao put her education to work through research and community engagement activities. Most recently, Ms. Rao served as graduate research intern for several applied research projects in UMass Dartmouth's Center for Policy Analysis. Previously, she served as a research assistant for Charlton's Business Innovation Research Center (BIRC).
"Today I am standing in front of you because of our wonderful University. There is so much difference between the person I was when I came here and the person I am right now," said Ms. Rao. "UMass Dartmouth has become our second home. Success is not what someone else defines for you. Success is finding satisfaction in what you do."
Charlton College of Business has been recognized by the Princeton Review as one of the 290 Best Business Colleges in the U.S. and by U.S. News & World Report as both one of the Best Colleges of Business and Business Graduate Schools in the country. The Charlton College of Business is committed to serving the needs of the business community on the SouthCoast of Massachusetts and across the state, while creating opportunities for its students to learn, grow, and succeed. Named in honor of retail giant Earle P. Charlton, the business school embodies his focus on quality, ethical principles, and a driving entrepreneurial spirit. The faculty represents the highest measure of this quality in their scholarship, teaching, and service.
UMass Dartmouth's 2014 Commencement is over three days with four ceremonies. This year's undergraduate and graduate ceremonies will take place May 16-19, 2014. All of the ceremonies, except for the UMass School of Law, will be held in the University's Vietnam Veterans Peace Memorial Amphitheater. In the event of rain, these ceremonies will be moved to the Tripp Athletic Center. The Law School ceremony will be held in the Main Auditorium on the main campus, rain or shine.