Fairfield University Commencement, May 19, 2019

Fairfield University Commencement, May 19, 2019

Graduates seated at Commencement Exercises

Fairfield University has announced the speakers for its 69th Commencement, which will take place on Sunday, May 19, 2019. Undergraduate and graduate ceremonies will be held on Bellarmine Lawn of the University campus.

Fairfield University has announced the speakers for its 69th Commencement ceremonies, which will take place on Sunday, May 19, 2019. At the undergraduate ceremony, the speaker will be Chris Lowney, celebrated author, co-founder of Jesuit Commons, and vice-chair of the board of CommonSpirit Health, among several other philanthropic endeavors. The graduate ceremony speaker will be Billy Shore, founder of Share Our Strength and the “No Kid Hungry” campaign, and former Congressional appointee to the National Commission on Hunger.

Lowney, who will receive an honorary Doctor of Laws degree at the undergraduate ceremony, is the co-founder of Jesuit Commons, which pioneered an online university program for refugees. He is also one of the co-founders of the Contemplative Leaders in Action program, which works with young adults to encourage the formation of emerging leaders. Additionally, Lowney founded Pilgrimage for Our Children’s Future, to support education and healthcare projects in developing countries. He currently serves as vice-chair of the board of CommonSpirit Health. Lowney’s 18-year career with the finance firm J.P. Morgan took him to all corners of the world and helped inspire him to write several best-selling books, including Heroic Leadership which has been translated into 11 languages. Other works include Pope Francis: Why He Leads the Way He Leads, the first book to explore the Pope's leadership approach; and Make Today Matter: 10 Habits for a Better Life (and World). Lowney graduated summa cum laude from Fordham University, where he also earned his master’s degree in philosophy.  

Billy Shore, along with his sister Debbie, founded Share Our Strength, which is committed to ending childhood hunger in the United States. The organization’s “No Kid Hungry” campaign has provided more than one billion meals to children since it began in 2010. Additionally, Shore hosts a weekly podcast, “Add Passion and Stir,” which brings together well-known chefs and change-makers to talk about the central role food plays in social justice. From 2014 to 2015, he served as a Congressional appointee to the National Commission on Hunger. Shore was named one of “America’s Best Leaders” by U.S. News and World Report, he is a winner of the prestigious Jefferson Award for Greater Public Service, and he has authored four books on social change. Shore graduated from the University of Pennsylvania and earned his law degree at George Washington University. Shore will receive an honorary Doctor of Laws degree during Fairfield's graduate ceremony.

The 2019 undergraduate Commencement is scheduled to begin at 9:30 a.m. on Bellarmine Lawn, to be followed by the graduate ceremony at 3 p.m. The total numbers of expected degrees to be awarded are: 952 Bachelor's, 340 Master's, 25 Sixth-Year Certificates, and 33 Doctorates. Honorary degrees will also be bestowed upon three additional recipients: William Atwell, P’08, managing director of Atwell Partners, LLC and former chair of the Fairfield University Board of Trustees; Marna Borgstrom, CEO of Yale New Haven Health System and Yale New Haven Hospital; and Hector M. Sanchez, principal of Cesar Batalla School in Bridgeport, Conn.

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Last modified: 03-15-19 3:29 PM

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