Seven Triangle campus graduations set for May 11-12 weekend

May 5, 2013 

The Triangle’s cap-and-gown parade started Sunday at St. Augustine’s University in Raleigh and will culminate next weekend when the area’s other seven colleges and universities celebrate their graduates.

If you want to treat Mom to a meal out for Mother’s Day, do not delay in securing a table. Thousands of graduates and their families will clog Triangle roads and businesses on Saturday and Sunday.

The festivities started at Wake Tech Community College on Saturday, when 1,400 students received degrees. Separate ceremonies were held at the new gym on the main campus.

Here’s a rundown of the commencements coming next weekend:

Duke University

When: 10 a.m. Sunday at Wallace Wade Stadium, Durham

Speaker: Melinda Gates, philanthropist and Duke alumna

Graduates: 5,000

Notable: Duke will award an honorary degree to Henry Louis Gates Jr., noted Harvard professor of African-American history and literature, who used to teach at Duke.

Meredith College

When: 7 p.m. Saturday at Dorton Arena, State Fairgrounds, Raleigh

Speaker: Anne-Marie Slaughter, international affairs scholar

Graduates: 500

Notable: Meredith moved its ceremony off campus to Dorton Arena to accommodate friends and family of a larger graduating class.

N.C. Central University

• Undergraduates

When: 8 a.m. Saturday, O’Kelly-Riddick Stadium, Durham

Speaker: Fredricka Whitfield, CNN news anchor and correspondent

• Graduate and professional students

When: 3 p.m. Friday at McDougald-McLendon Gymnasium

Speaker: Johnny C. Taylor Jr., president and CEO of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund.

Graduates: 1,100

Notable: NCCU holds separate ceremonies for undergraduates and graduation/professional students.

N.C. State University

When: 9 a.m. Saturday at PNC Arena, Raleigh

Speaker: Phil Freelon, architect and president of the Freelon Group Inc.

Graduates: 5,300

Notable: Graduates and their families will get a glimpse of the good life when they attend a reception Friday at the 8,000-square-foot, $3.5 million home of Chancellor Randy Woodson.

Shaw University

When: 11 a.m. Saturday at Dorton Arena, State Fairgrounds, Raleigh

Speaker: Dr. Cleveland L. Sellers Jr., president of Voorhees College and Shaw alumnus

Graduates: 300

Notable: Sellers, a civil rights activist, will speak on “Rebuilding the African-American Community – One Institution/One Person at a Time.”

UNC-Chapel Hill

When: 9:30 a.m. Sunday at Kenan Stadium, Chapel Hill

Speaker: Steve Case, co-founder of America Online, chair of the Case Foundation and CEO of Revolution

Graduates: 6,000

Notable: UNC-CH will award an honorary degree to Mary Pope Osborne, author of the famed “Magic Tree House” children’s book series.

William Peace University

When: 10 a.m. Saturday on the University Green, Raleigh

Speaker: Erskine Bowles, businessman, former UNC president, former White House Chief of Staff

Graduates: 150

Notable: Graduates will have the option of choosing a diploma from the renamed coed William Peace University or the former women’s-only Peace College.

Staff writer Jane Stancill

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