Morgan State University gathers in the Hill Field House for the final commencement of Morgan’s 150th celebration

The MSU Spokesman

Morgan State University administration, faculty, graduates and their families gathered in the Talmadge L. Hill Field House to celebrate the 142nd commencement ceremony Friday morning.

This December marks the final commencement part of the Morgan State sesquicentennial celebration.

The keynote was given by the honorable Boyd K. Rutherford, Lt. Gov. of Maryland.

Rutherford advised the students to not fear failure and keep advancing.

“As you take the next big step, remember, you’ve been preparing for this. You are prepared for this,” said Rutherford. “You’re ready to move on…So don’t be afraid of the future, most of all, don’t be afraid of failure… I would also encourage you to continue to prepare yourself, never stop learning, gain more knowledge and skills that will position you well for the opportunities that will come your way.”

Board of Regents Vice Chair, Rev. Dr. Frances Murphy Draper, gave words of encouragement to the graduating class as well.

“Graduates you may have come to the end of your studies here at Morgan but we recognize that you’re just beginning to fulfill your lifelong dreams and ambitions,” said Draper. “We are confident that we have prepared you well to assume your rightful place in this global society and that you will be successful in all of your endeavors.”

Boyd K. Rutherford, Lt. Governor of Maryland, addresses the graduating Class of 2017 at the December Commencement. Photo Credit to Wyman Jones, Visuals Editor

Rutherford also spoke about the partnership between Maryland and Morgan State, with the example of the next steps for Northwood Shopping Center.  

“In September of this year, I was pleased to announce the state’s financial support for the demolition and redevelopment of the nearby Northwood Shopping Center. That center has a long and, in many cases, troubled history in this area. And what had become a run down shopping center will soon become a thriving mixed use town center.”

Rutherford was awarded an honorary degree for Doctor of Public Service. Along with Rutherford, several former Morgan State presidents like John Emory Round, William Maslin Frysinger, Francis J. Wagner and John Oakley Spencer, were honored posthumously with degrees for Doctors of Laws, while King Virgil Cheek and Andrew Billingsley, were in attendance to receive theirs.

The graduating class was the largest of all December graduating classes with 500 graduates.