Independent Minds, Working Together

Class of 2013 to Celebrate Conclusion of Four-Year Journey

The College of Wooster’s 143rd commencement exercises scheduled for May 13

April 29, 2013 by John Finn

WOOSTER, Ohio — A class of nearly 400 seniors will celebrate the end of one journey and the beginning of another when The College of Wooster hosts its 143rd commencement ceremony on Monday, May 13. The event, which will be held outdoors (weather permitting) in the Oak Grove (1220 Beall Ave.), begins at 10 a.m.

Graduates, along with family and friends, will hear from two honorary degree recipients — Jacqueline Barton and John H. Bracey, Jr., — who will share a few words of wisdom with the Class of 2013.

Barton, who will receive the Doctor of Science degree, is the Arthur and Marian Hanisch Memorial Professor of Chemistry and Chair of the Division of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering at the California Institute of Technology, where she has pioneered and added to many areas of DNA research. A native New Yorker, Barton received her A.B. (1974) summa cum laude from Barnard College and her Ph.D. (1978) in inorganic chemistry from Columbia University. Among her many awards and achievements are a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship and 10 honorary degrees. She was also elected to the National Academy of the Sciences in 2002, and received the National Medal of Science from President Obama in 2010.

Bracey, who will receive the Doctor of Humane Letters degree, is the chairman of the W.E.B. Du Bois Department of Afro-American Studies at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, a position he has held for nearly 40 years. Born in Chicago, Bracey grew up in Washington, D.C. where he attended Howard University. He later attended Roosevelt College and Northeastern University. A prolific author, he has repeatedly built bridges between both academic disciplines and social communities, encouraging a national discussion, for instance, between Jews and blacks. He has also helped to bridge the gap between the university classroom and at-risk inner city high school students, and established himself as an advocate of degree programs for prison inmates.

The Rev. Katharine Rhodes Henderson will deliver the baccalaureate address the day before commencement (May 12) at 10 a.m. in McGaw Chapel. She is currently a contributing blogger to the Huffington Post and the Washington Post. She graduated from The College of Wooster in 1978 with a degree in German studies, and went on to earn her master of divinity (1982) from Union Theological Seminary and her doctor of education (2000) from Columbia University. In 2009, she was named President of the Auburn Theological Seminary after having served previously in development and admissions. Henderson was also the former associate pastor at Central Christian Church in New York, and is the author of God’s Troublemakers: How Women of Faith are Changing the World.

Additional information about commencement is available by phone (330-263-2313) or online.