On Saturday, Aug. 2, American InterContinental University celebrated its 2014 graduation ceremony in the Grand Ballroom at the historic Navy Pier in Chicago. About 200 graduates, their families and friends attended the exciting event, with many joining together to celebrate the night before at the alumni reception.
The day began with the induction of new members into AIU honor societies Epsilon Pi Tau, Kappa Beta Delta, Delta Mu Delta, and Alpha Phi Sigma. Darrin Johnson, AIU administrative faculty, launched the ceremony on a high note with a beautiful trumpet rendition of the National Anthem. Provost and Chief Academic Officer Dr. Rob Manzer then welcomed the audience, explaining the significance of achieving an advanced degree and calling on all the graduates to consider the future. He then paid special tribute to the men and women of the U.S. Armed Services who were part of the represented graduating classes. President and Chancellor Dr. George Miller then extended congratulations to the ceremony’s participants and reminded them that achieving a degree should not be looked at as an end, but rather a beginning to something more.
In an inspirational speech, guest keynote speaker Tatyana Ali called on the ceremony’s graduates to engage in life’s struggles in order to follow their dreams. She spoke about the important place courage and creativity have in living a fulfilled life and reminded the audience to share their determination, courage, and creativity. Graduating Class Speaker Steven Frazier, MBA 2014, spoke about his educational journey and reminded that the audience that aside from being practical, learning can be enjoyable. He also discussed the importance heroes have played in his life, and how important it is to play that role in the lives of others, as well.
Education Program Chair Dr. Debra Burrington presented the Distinguished Alumni Award to Coralanne Griffith-Hunte. Coralanne discussed her educational background and spoke about her success as the founding director of CPCS Charter School and as founder and CEO of The Created for Greatness Leadership Group. She discussed not only her successes, but the obstacles she has faced, such as Hurricane Sandy and being diagnosed with breast cancer, and the perspective she has gained through them. She closed by calling on graduates to understand that they will be the agents of change in the world.
After degrees were presented, Dr. Miller explained the significance of the turning of the tassel, asked the graduates to stand and conferred their respective degrees.
Throughout the day and at the alumni event the night before, attendees were able to commemorate the event at an AIU graduation photo booth – see their inspiring photos here. Thanks to all who attended and participated to make 2014 graduation a memorable and successful day.