Fairleigh Dickinson University Commencement on May 20
More than 3,000 Students from 66 Countries to Receive Degrees
Teaneck, NJ (April 30, 2008) — More than 3,000 students will receive doctoral, master’s, bachelor’s and associate degrees at the 65th Commencement ceremony of Fairleigh Dickinson University on Tuesday, May 20, 2008, at the Izod Center in East Rutherford, NJ.
The Class of 2008 represents 66 countries, 30 states plus the District of Columbia and all 21 counties in New Jersey.
University President J. Michael Adams will preside at the 10 a.m. ceremony and the campus provosts will present the Student Pinnacle Awards.
The university will confer honorary doctor of humane letters degrees on three outstanding individuals — Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff, U.S. Congressman Rodney Frelinghuysen, and George Martin, FDU alumnus, business leader, athlete, volunteer, and activist.
Secretary Chertoff will deliver the Commencement Address.
Honorary Degree Recipients
In 2005, Judge Michael Chertoff was sworn in as the second Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security. He formerly served as United States Circuit Judge for the Third Circuit Court of Appeals.
The Senate previously confirmed Secretary Chertoff in 2001 to serve as Assistant Attorney General for the Criminal Division at the Department of Justice. As Assistant Attorney General, he oversaw the investigation of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. He also formed the Enron Task Force, which produced more than 20 convictions.
Chertoff spent more than a decade as a federal prosecutor, prosecuting significant cases. Among them was the case in which the leaders of La Cosa Nostra were sentenced to 100 years in prison.
He is a magna cum laude graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School.
Rodney Frelinghuysen is serving in his seventh term as the Representative for New Jersey's 11th Congressional District. In the 110th Congress, Rep. Frelinghuysen serves as New Jersey's senior member of the House Appropriations Committee and on two appropriations subcommittees: Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies, of which he is the Ranking Member, and Defense. He is also a member of the Select Intelligence Oversight Panel.
Throughout his service in Congress, Frelinghuysen has been a leader and tireless fighter for the people of New Jersey. For his efforts, The New York Times called him “New Jersey’s ‘go-to-guy.’” He continues to focus on critical issues facing our state, including securing our homeland, expanding our mass transportation systems, preserving open space, creating jobs and supporting our veterans.
George Martin, Fairleigh Dickinson alumnus, former NY Giants’ defensive lineman and vice president of AXA Sports Financial Services, has had great personal success and supported the achievements of others as a business leader, athlete, volunteer and activist.
Martin is now nearing completion of “A Journey for 9/11,” a 3,500-mile walk from New York to California. His mission is to raise $10 million to help provide health care for the rescue and recovery workers who fell ill after the 9/11 attacks.
From 1975-88, Martin played a pivotal role with the New York Giants as a defensive lineman. During his professional football career, he set the current NFL record for most touchdowns by a defensive lineman and was a team captain of the Super Bowl XXI championship team.
Student Pinnacle Winners
The 2008 student Pinnacle Award will be presented to Dean E. Chamberlain, Jr. of Stockholm, NJ, representing the College at Florham, Madison, NJ, and Nirodha Wijeyewickrema, Colombo, Sri Lanka, representing the Metropolitan Campus in Teaneck, NJ. This is the highest honor the University bestows on a graduating student. One student from each campus, who has demonstrated academic excellence, public service and commitment to the University, is honored. Each winner will address their fellow graduates and the assembled audience.
Dean E. Chamberlain, Jr. — College at Florham
From academics to volunteer work, Dean Chamberlain has found success in nearly every aspect of campus life.
A biology major, Chamberlain has achieved outstanding honors in his field. His research has been accepted by the American Society for Microbiology’s annual meeting, awarded first place at the Metropolitan Association of College and University Biologists meeting and published in The Bulletin of the New Jersey Academy of Science.
As a campus leader, Chamberlain served as vice president of academic affairs, academic affairs senator and was a resident assistant. He also organized events to promote awareness of biology and environmental issues as vice president of the Biology Club and member of the Green Club.
As a volunteer EMT with the Florham Park emergency squad, Chamberlain assisted students on campus who needed emergency care. He also worked in a hospital emergency department, where he prepared patients for examination.
Chamberlain was recognized as a Col. Fairleigh S. Dickinson Scholar, Charter Day Scholar and a member of the Phi Omega Epsilon Honors Society. He will begin medical school at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey School of Osteopathic Medicine this fall.
Nirodha A. Wijeyewickrema — Metropolitan Campus
Since her first day on campus, Nirodha Wijeyewickrema has sought out opportunities to enhance the campus community.
A native of Sri Lanka, Wijeyewickrema came to FDU to pursue a major in electrical engineering. Over her four years on campus, she held leadership positions in the Residence Hall Association, International Student Association, University Players Theater Group, Catholic Campus Ministry and the Society for Women Engineers, among others.
As a member of the International Student Focus Group, she served as an advisor to the Office of the Provost and Office of International Student Services, helping to shape major policy changes that benefit new international students.
Off campus, Wijeyewickrema visited local elementary schools to teach students about Sri Lankan culture through ISA and worked as a technology business analysis intern for Thomson Financial Core Product Management.
Wijeyewickrema was recognized as a Col. Fairleigh S. Dickinson Scholar, recipient of the Patricia and Albert Baron award for commitment and contributions to the community and member of the Phi Zeta Kappa Honor Society. After graduation, Wijeyewickrema plans to work for a year before pursuing an MBA in Project Management or Finance.
For further information, visit: http://www.fdu.edu
For more information visit:
Scott Giglio, College at Florham, 973 443 8756 firstname.lastname@example.org
Gretchen Johnson, Metropolitan Campus, 201 692 7032 email@example.com