Area Students Graduate from Creighton University Print
News Releases - Education & Schools
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Tuesday, 24 May 2011 11:46

OMAHA, NEB.– (05/20/2011)(readMedia)-- Creighton University conferred the largest number of degrees ever at its May commencement – more than 1,500 – to students from 46 states and seven countries. Two ceremonies were held Saturday, May 14, at the Qwest Center Omaha – The undergraduate schools, School of Law and Graduate School ceremony were held in the morning. The ceremony for Health Sciences professional schools, including schools of Dentistry, Medicine, Nursing and Pharmacy and Health Professions, was held in the afternoon. University President the Rev. John P. Schlegel, S.J., presided at both ceremonies-his last as Creighton president.

The following students from your area received degrees during the commencement ceremonies:

Kelsie Knutsen of Bettendorf earned a Bachelor of Science in Health Sciences degree

Stephan Marsh of Bettendorf earned a law degree

Special awards and recognitions were presented to leaders or groups who have made a difference locally, nationally and internationally.

Cardinal Jaime Ortega, Archbishop of Havana, Cuba received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree for a life dedicated to promoting religious freedom in Cuba.

An honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree was presented to the Rev. John Foley, S.J., founder of Cristo Rey Schools and executive chair of Cristo Rey Network.

A Presidential Medallion was given to Omaha area survivors of the Holocaust who endured great hardship with dignity and faith in German concentration camps during the 1940s when six million Jews were killed. After the war, 200 survivors found their way to the Omaha area with fewer than three dozen currently alive. Accepting the award for the group was survivor Beatrice Karp.

Creighton's Alumni Achievement Citation – the highest award given to an alumnus – was presented to Cage S. Johnson, M.D., a 1965 graduate of the School of Medicine. Johnson is an international authority on sickle cell disease, a serious disorder in which the body manufactures misshapen red blood cells that block blood flow, causing severe pain and organ damage.

Also receiving recognition in the afternoon was Shirley A. Blanchard, Ph.D., associate professor of Occupational Therapy, who will receive the Creighton Students Union Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Award for Teaching Achievement. Blanchard has served in the health care field for more than 30 years as an occupational therapist, researcher and educator.

About Creighton University: Creighton University, a Catholic, Jesuit institution located in Omaha, Neb., enrolls more than 4,100 undergraduate and 3,200 professional school and graduate students. Nationally recognized for providing a balanced educational experience, the University offers a rigorous academic agenda with a broad range of disciplines, providing undergraduate, graduate and professional degree programs that emphasize educating the whole person: academically, socially and spiritually. Creighton has been a top-ranked Midwestern university in the college edition of U.S. News & World Report magazine for more than 20 years. For more information, visit our website at: www.creighton.edu.