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President Harvey Stenger speaks from the stage at the Events Center during a Commencement ceremony on May 20. The University held four Commencement ceremonies on May 19-20. Photo by Jonathan Cohen

Commencement 2012: Graduates get a ‘letter’ from the president

By Eric Coker| MAY 21, 2012

President Harvey Stenger has much in common with the Class of 2012.

More than five months ago, Stenger was facing the unknown: A new job at Binghamton University that not only required finding a new place to live and new friends, but left him wondering if he would be successful.

Members of the Class of 2012 will soon be facing the unknown, as well, whether it is at a new school or new job. In a personal letter read at Commencement ceremonies to his “newest friends and colleagues,” Stenger assured graduates that they will overcome their uncertainties and fears like he has.

“In four or five months, you will still feel a little bit lost, a little bit lonely and a little bit homesick,” he said. “But you will also feel a sense of achievement. It’s difficult to imagine right now, but it will happen. I know it will happen for you, because I know how great this University is and how it has helped prepare you for uncertainty and unknowns. Our faculty, staff and your fellow students have been instrumental in that preparation. You will find yourself referring back to those experiences to gain the strength and confidence when you need it most.”

Stenger’s first Commencement address as president was one of several highlights in a weekend that saw the University award more than 3,300 bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees. Undergraduate ceremonies were held in the packed Events Center on May 20, while the graduate ceremony was held the night before.

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