By Buffalo State University
SUNY Buffalo State University will confer degrees on roughly 1,300 undergraduate and 500 graduate students during its 151st commencement celebration on Saturday, May 20, in the Buffalo State Sports Arena.
Both undergraduate and graduate degree candidates will be honored at 9 a.m., 1 and 5 p.m. ceremonies.
The 9 a.m. ceremony recognizes degree candidates from the School of the Professions; the 1 p.m. ceremony celebrates degree candidates from the School of Education and Individualized and Multidisciplinary Studies; and the 5 p.m. ceremony honors candidates from the School of Arts and Sciences.
√ Deneen Hernandez, Class of 1988, a recently retired forensic examiner for the Federal Bureau of Investigation laboratory division in the cryptanalysis and racketeering records unit in Quantico, Virginia, will deliver the commencement address at the 9 a.m. ceremony. Hernandez is an enrolled member of the Seneca Nation of Indians from the Cattaraugus Reservation in Western New York and possesses roughly 30 years of varied law enforcement experience.
√ Mildred Otero, the senior vice president for national impact at Leadership for Educational Equity (LEE), will deliver the commencement address at the 1 p.m. ceremony. Otero is responsible for LEE’s national strategy, designing and developing life-changing civic leadership programs, experiences and tools serving LEE members across the phases of four leadership pathways. She is also an adjunct instructor for the University of Miami School of Education.
√ Raven Baxter, ’14 and ’16, widely known as “Dr. Raven the Science Maven,” will deliver the commencement address at the 5 p.m. ceremony. Baxter is an internationally acclaimed, award-winning educator and molecular biologist who is renowned for her aptitude in merging scientific concepts and popular culture.
Read more about all of the commencement speakers.
In addition, three of Buffalo State University’s most accomplished students – two of whom will receive the Buffalo State President’s Medal – have been chosen to deliver the student address during the three ceremonies.
La’Shea Green-Thomas will deliver the School of the Professions student address at the 9 a.m. ceremony. Orlando J. Hill, recipient of the President’s Medal for Outstanding Graduate Student, will deliver the School of Education student address during 1 p.m. ceremony. Daniel P. May, recipient of the President’s Medal for Outstanding Undergraduate Student, will deliver the School of Arts and Sciences student address at the university’s 5 p.m. ceremony.
The President’s Medal, the highest student honor bestowed by Buffalo State, recognizes one undergraduate student and one graduate student annually for their exceptional academic achievement, community service, leadership, and creativity.
Also, the following graduates of the Class of 2023 will be honored with the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence in recognition of their academic and extracurricular achievements, leadership, and service: Miggie Wong, Mikala Highsmith and Maimouna Samba. The Chancellor’s Award is the highest student honor bestowed by the State University of New York. The Chancellor’s Award recognizes those who have integrated academic excellence with distinguished achievement in areas such as community service, campus involvement, creative and performing arts, athletics, entrepreneurship, leadership and career achievement.
For more information, visit the commencement website.