A Look Back On Spring Commencement

A Look Back On Spring Commencement

 By The Numbers: What are students doing after graduation?

 In a non-scientific poll, we asked the graduates what they will be doing once they leave campus. Good news! For the first time in three years, the percentage of those who report that they have a job is greater than those seeking one. 

Album: Senior Ticket Pick Up at the Alumni Center

Seniors stopped by our photo booth to snap some pics before picking up their Spring Commencement tickets. Click through to see them all.

 In Pictures: Spring Commencement


Two Members Receive Honorary Degrees

Life members of the Alumni Association, Dr. James L. Curtis and Marshall Weinberg were honored during Saturday’s ceremony. 

 Dr. James L. Curtis

Throughout his distinguished career as a psychiatrist, teacher and philanthropist, Curtis has demonstrated a lifelong commitment to social justice and increasing opportunity for people in poverty, regardless of their race or gender.

Born in Jeffersonville, Ga., he grew up in Albion and earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Albion College in 1943. The only black student in his U-M Medical School class, Curtis earned his medical degree in 1946, graduating in the top fifth of the class.

James and Vivian Curtis, who earned a Master of Social Work degree in 1948 from U-M’s School of Social Work, have been generous supporters of the university. Their gift made possible the James L. and Vivian A. Curtis Gallery of African and African American Art launched at the Museum of Art in 1998. In 2007, they funded the Vivian A. and James L. Curtis School of Social Work Research and Training Center.


Marshall Weinberg

As a businessman, humanitarian and philanthropist, Weinberg exemplifies the Michigan tradition of leadership and service to society. He is deeply committed to U-M and higher education, international justice, and women’s reproductive rights

In addition to serving on the LSA Dean’s Advisory Committee and Honors Program Advisory Committee, he has endowed a distinguished university professorship, graduate fellowships and graduate student prizes in the Department of Philosophy, the Marshall Weinberg Cognitive Science Symposium, and graduate student support in the Jean & Samuel Frankel Center for Judaic Studies and the Department of Anthropology. He has established endowments in SNRE and ISR’s Population Studies Center. He also supports the American Museum of Natural History Center for Biodiversity and Conservation.

 Life Lessons From Mary Barra

Marry Barra, CEO of General Motors, delivered the keynote address. Her speech outlined six life lessons. via University Record

• No matter what you choose to do in life, pursue it with passion and hard work. “Remember, hard work beats talent — if talent doesn’t work hard.”

• Conduct yourself with integrity at all times. “Remember that how you get things done is just as important as getting them done.”

• Build relationships. “Remember, too, that you can’t build a relationship only when you need it. Like so many important things in life, strong relationships are built gradually, steadily, over time.”

• Address challenges head on. Barra told the story of a lead engineer describing her hiring process for her plant manager. It consisted of filling a bathtub, offering applicants a teaspoon, teacup and bucket, and asking them to empty the tub.

   “I get it,” the manager said. “A go-getter will use the bucket.” “No,” said the engineer.  “A go-getter will pull the drain plug.”

• Give something back. “More than any generation in history, you have the power to expose and correct injustice, to rethink outdated assumptions, and to make a difference.”

• Remember your friends, family, and faith. “They make your life journey truly rewarding.  During the good times, you’ll have someone to celebrate with — like today. And during the tough times, you’ll have someone to turn to for advice, comfort and love,” she said.

Michigan Alumnus is made possible through the generous support of Alumni Association members. Join today to help sustain the future of Michigan Alumnus and other alumni programs. Visit umalumni.com/support.