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Federal judge to headline Nicholls commencement

THIBODAUX – Spring commencement exercises at Nicholls State University will be conducted Saturday, May 23, in Stopher Gymnasium – where more than 550 degrees will be conferred.

Graduates of the College of Business Administration, College of Nursing and Allied Health and University College will receive their degrees beginning at 10 a.m. – and at 2 p.m., degrees will be awarded to graduates of the College of Arts and Sciences, College of Education and John Folse Culinary Institute.

The Hon. Yvette Kane

The Hon. Yvette Kane

The Hon. Yvette Kane, 1973 Nicholls graduate and chief judge of the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, is scheduled as keynote speaker. Born in Donaldsonville, Kane received a Bachelor of Arts in sociology from Nicholls and a Doctor of Jurisprudence from Tulane Law School. In 1998, President Bill Clinton nominated Kane to a seat on the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania. She has served as chief judge for the district since 2006.

Following Kane’s address, Dr. Eugene Dial, vice president for student affairs, will present the honors, and Dr. Carroll Falcon, provost and vice president for academic affairs, will present the candidates for the degrees. Dr. Stephen T. Hulbert, university president, will confer the degrees.

In addition, an honorary doctorate will be awarded to Gary Fine, a local vegetation specialist and research scientist. Fine has helped Nicholls faculty secure nearly $250,000 in restoration grants for the university. Moreover, he has worked with approximately 60 Nicholls students on internships, research projects and service learning projects, and he has overseen the production of tens of thousands of coastal and upland plants for a variety of restoration and research projects within the Louisiana Native Plant Initiative.

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