392 graduates receive diplomas.
Cumberland University class of 2012 graduates receive degrees
Cumberland University commencement exercises concluded Saturday as 392 graduates received their diplomas.
Dr. Pete Peterson, Vice President of Academic Affairs welcomed the nearly 3,000 family and friends who gathered for the 170th Commencement. Dr. Harvill Eaton, 25th president of the University, greeted the attendees and introduced special guests, which included Congresswoman Diane Black, Representative Mark Pody, Mayor Phillip Craighead, and members of Cumberland’s Board of Trust.
Pastor John Hunn, Senior Pastor of Immanuel Baptist Church in Lebanon and Cumberland University alumni (’87), offered an invocation and encouraged graduates to remain connected to their Alma Mater.
Each year the University awards the Algernon Syndey Sullivan award to a student and a member of the community who has demonstrated distinctive spiritual qualities, leadership, and service. This year the University chose to give the community honor to Dr. & Mrs. Bert Coble. The Cobles have lived their lives as examples of stewardship and leadership. Dr. Coble led the School of Music and the Arts from 1972 until 1988. He also served as choir director at numerous churches in Middle Tennessee. Mrs. Coble, a former teacher at Lebanon's Byars-Dowdy Elementary School often assisted Dr. Coble with his initiatives at Cumberland University. The student awards were given to Ms. Helena Dimantas De Farias, a graduate from Brazil and Mr. Eckton Chinyanga from South Africa.
This University also honored the family of the late Fran Moscardelli. For nearly 25 years Fran was a beloved member of the Cumberland University Board of Trust. He was a respected businessman and he and his wife served the Wilson county community as models of public service. The Moscardelli Family honored Cumberland by serving as Macebearers for the ceremony.
Other honors were also presented. The President’s Award for Teaching Excellence was presented to Assistant Professor of Nursing, Mrs. Joy Kimbrell. Professor Kimbell holds a bachelors of Science degree in Nursing and a Master of Science degree in Acute/Critical Care Nursing from Vanderbilt University. The President’s Award is presented annually to the graduate who embodies the ideals, principles, and spirit of the University. This year the honor went to Mr. Evan Sanna, a graduate from Australia.
In all, students from 9 countries were awarded diplomas in the ceremony.