ALBANY, NY – Maria College’s 2019 commencement took place on Sunday, May 19 at the Empire State Plaza Convention Center in Albany, NY. A total of 254 students graduated, one of the largest classes in Maria College’s recent history. Bachelor’s and Associate’s degrees were conferred in Health & Occupational Sciences, Healthcare Management, Applied Sciences (Nursing, Occupational Therapy), Liberal Arts, and Psychology.
This year marked the College’s 57th Commencement. Marilyn Lacey, RSM, gave the commencement address. She is a Sister of Mercy and the founder and executive director of Mercy Beyond Borders (MBB), a nonprofit organization working with women and girls in South Sudan, Haiti, Uganda, and Kenya to alleviate their extreme poverty.
“It isn’t happiness that makes you grateful, that’s backwards, it is gratitude that makes your happy,” Sister Marilyn said to the students in her speech. She encouraged the students to use mercy in their personal and professional lives, beginning with noticing, in a sacred way, the world and people around them. “Awareness is everything. Yes, everything. Because when you become aware…it makes you see differently, you notice everything and everyone is connected and that separateness is a terrible illusion. We are here to repair the world.”
Local businessman and philanthropist Frederick Stutzman received the College’s McAuley Award for his leadership and years of service on the board of Maria College.
Maria College president Dr. Thomas Gamble said, “The entire Maria Community and the Board of Trustees were proud to recognize the great achievements of our graduates at this year’s commencement. This is a very important milestone in their lives and we wish to acknowledge and celebrate their perseverance as they take the values and knowledge from their time at Maria into the broader world to make a difference in the lives of others.”
Click here to watch a video of Sister Marilyn’s remarks.