Fresno State will graduate its largest class in history with more than 6,200 students meeting requirements. University officials say about 62 percent of the graduating students in the class of 2019 are first-generation students whose parents didn’t receive bachelor’s degrees. Among them, almost 49 percent are underrepresented minority students.

Fresno State’s 108th Commencement season is highlighted by the main University Commencement ceremony at 1:30 p.m. Saturday, May 18, at the Save Mart Center. The University Commencement procession begins at 1 p.m. All graduates and their guests are encouraged to attend the University Commencement ceremony that celebrates all graduates’ achievements.

Fresno State will host a reception for all Fresno State graduates, their friends and families from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, May 18, on the south lawn of the Save Mart Center.

This marks the first time the ceremony will take place in the afternoon — historically it has been held in the morning. Although each college and other affinity groups hold separate celebrations, the University-wide ceremony is Fresno State’s only commencement event where degrees are officially conferred to graduates.

“We are so proud of all of the accomplishments of all of our graduates,” said Dr. Frank R. Lamas, vice president for the Division of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management at Fresno State. “We can’t wait to see what their futures hold. This weekend is a time for celebrating with family and friends all of your hard work and achievements.”

About 6,229 Fresno State students are eligible for degree conferral by University President Joseph I. Castro. Pending final certification of spring 2019 degrees, it would be the highest number of degrees ever awarded at Fresno State in an academic year. Castro will be joined by Hugo Morales of the California State University Board of Trustees.

Demitria Wack, president of Associated Students, Inc., will open the free, public ceremony with the traditional student welcome.

Fresno State’s 6,229-student class of 2019 consists of:

t 5,065 students who received a degree in summer or fall 2018 or are pending final review in spring 2019 for their baccalaureate degrees.

t 1,061 who received a degree in summer or fall 2018 or are pending final review in spring 2019 for their post-baccalaureate degrees.

t The doctoral cohorts and candidate breakdowns are:

t Doctor of Nursing Practice, 38.

t Doctor of Physical Therapy, 32.

t Doctoral Program in Educational Leadership, 33. 

Summa cum laude (with highest praise) distinction for a GPA of 3.9 to 4.0 was earned by 260 students, with 47 of those earning straight A’s.

The students selected for the University’s top academic honors, the President’s Medalist and the University Graduate Medalist, will be announced. The students were selected from the nine Deans’ Undergraduate Medalists and nine Deans’ Graduate Medalists representing the University’s eight colleges and schools and the Division of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management.

The announcement will be posted on the University Commencement website and at FresnoStateNews.com along with a photo gallery of the weekend’s activities.

Also, Morales will confer honorary doctorate degrees by authority of the CSU Board of Trustees to John C. Harris and Janis Yanehiro.

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