"Your success should lead to a dedication to helping others," noted Pat Dugan '57 H'14 and Marion Dugan H'14 who were awarded honorary degrees at Commencement
On Friday, May 23 Wagner College celebrated the 126th Commencement Ceremony where more than 500 graduates were welcomed into the Wagner College Alumni Association. In case you missed it, you can watch the recorded ceremony online (academic procession begins approximately at the 1:00:00 mark).
Pat Dugan '57 H'14 and Marion Dugan H'14 were awarded honorary degrees for their dedication and commitment to philanthropy. In 2001 Pat and Marion Dugan were interested in significantly increasing their charitable giving/social investing. As remains the case today, they were witnessing reports of scandals at a variety of local and national charities. Since many of these charities were household names that people assumed did good work, they concluded that they needed an independent and objective source of information to rely upon. But the information was not readily available. Therefore, believing that the American people are amazingly generous and derive great satisfaction from helping others, but are not always sure how to help, they decided to create an unbiased source of information, Charity Navigator that would assist not just their needs for this information, but charitable givers/social investors throughout the nation with every type of charitable interest.
Civil rights leader Julian Bond H'14 was awarded an honorary degree and provided the 2014 Commencement address to the Class of 2014.
Excerpt from Julian Bond's address to the Wagner College Class of 2014:
"Most of those who made the [civil rights movement] were not famous; they were faceless. They were not notable; they were nameless – marchers with tired feet, protestors beaten back by billy clubs and fire hoses, unknown women and men who risked job and home and life. As we honor you graduates today for what you have achieved, so should you honor them for what they achieved for you. They helped you learn how to be free. They gave you the freedom to enter the larger world protected from its worst abuses.
Our future as a nation depends on our willingness to continue to reach into the racial cleavage that defines American society and change the racial contours of our world.
Wherever you may go from here – if there are hungry minds or hungry bodies nearby, you can feed them. If there are precincts of the powerless poor nearby, you can organize them. If there is racial or ethnic injustice, you can attack and destroy it.
By this ritual today, you are about to be officially enrolled in an elite within our nation – the community of educated women and men. As you go forward from this place, we all hope that you will do well – but also that you will do good."
Beth Cruz '71, president of the Wagner College Alumni Association welcomed the Class of 2014 into the Alumni Association. Excerpt of Cruz's remarks to the Class of 2014:
"Many of you have volunteered while a student at Wagner. I urge all of you to continue to have a place in your life and in your heart for volunteering. We are a campus of givers.... We, as alumni stand with you today. We are standing shoulder to shoulder with you; connecting with you and helping you navigate the potholes of life. Our Alumni Association is worldwide, and strong. Class of 2014, please stand, and turn your tassel from the right to the left. Welcome to the Alumni Association.