St. Joseph's College Announces 97th Annual Commencement Speakers

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Commencement exercises to take place May 21, 25 and 27

It is only appropriate that through our various commencement exercises, we honor and celebrate the College's core values and mission.

St. Joseph’s College (SJC) is pleased to announce the keynote speakers for its annual commencement ceremonies.

The SJC Long Island undergraduate commencement will be held on Saturday, May 21 at 10 a.m. and 3 p.m., depending on major, at the NYCB Theater in Westbury, New York. The keynote speaker for both ceremonies will be S. Helen Kearney, C.S.J., Ph.D., president of the Sisters of St. Joseph. S. Helen will receive an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters.

A separate ceremony for SJC Long Island students who will be receiving master’s degrees will take place on Wednesday, May 25 at 7 p.m. in the John A. Danzi Athletic Center at SJC Long Island. Diane Pfadenhauer, M.S., J.D., SPHR will serve as the ceremony’s keynote speaker. Diane Pfadenhauer is an attorney, human resources professional and is an assistant professor in the Graduate Management Studies program at St. Joseph’s College in New York.

The SJC Brooklyn commencement ceremony will take place on Friday, May 27 at 11 a.m. at the New York Marriott at the Brooklyn Bridge. This year’s keynote address will be given by Congressman Hakeem Jeffries (D-New York), representative for New York’s 8th Congressional District. Congressman Jeffries will receive an honorary Doctor of Laws.

This year, the College will also be honoring S. John Raymond McGann, C.S.J., with a posthumous honorary Doctor of Letters in recognition of her extraordinary contributions during her longstanding career at SJC. This recognition will be commemorated at the ceremonies on May 21 and May 27.

“The 2016 commencement coincides with the beginning of the College's centennial year,” said Jack P. Calareso, Ph.D., president of SJC. “It is only appropriate that through our various commencement exercises, we honor and celebrate the College's core values and mission. S. John Raymond McGann and S. Helen Kearney reflect the College's founding mission and continued fidelity to the Sisters of St. Joseph. Congressman Jeffries represents our commitment to service for the common good and Professor Pfadenhauer demonstrates the centrality of teaching to the educational experience at SJC.”

For more information about SJC’s commencement ceremonies, visit

St. Joseph’s College has been dedicated to providing a diverse population of students in the New York metropolitan area with an affordable education rooted in the liberal arts tradition since 1916. Independent and coeducational, the College provides a strong academic and value-oriented education at the undergraduate and graduate levels, aiming to prepare each student for a life characterized by integrity, intellectual and spiritual values, social responsibility and service. Through SJC Brooklyn, SJC Long Island and SJC Online, the College offers degrees in more than 45 majors, special course offerings and certificates, affiliated and pre-professional programs.

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