Mon, May 19, 2014

Community, Student Life, Technology

Graduation, Commencement and Gridlock Starting tomorrow

BY lyanne



If there was any questions, about Newark being a college town, this week dispels any doubt.  Starting Tuesday,  May 20th,  New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) to Confer More Than 2,600 Degrees at it’s 98th Commencement Ceremony.   With a collaboration of a sort, Newark Historian Clement Alexander Price, Board of Governors Distinguished Service Professor of History, Rutgers University-Newark Campus, and Director of the Rutgers Institute on Ethnicity, Culture, and the Modern Experience, will  deliver 2014 Commencement Address and receive Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters from the University. The university also will confer honorary degrees on three other individuals, John M. Dionisio, Executive Chairman of AECOM, and Robert S. Dow ‘69, who was Managing Partner at Lord Abbett & Co. before retiring in 2012, each will receive an honorary Doctor of Science.



Jay Vargas ’14, an electrical and computer engineering major from Maywood, didn’t enroll in college after high school; instead, he enlisted in the Marines, knowing that after five years of service, the GI Bill would pay his college tuition. In wartime, he was stationed twice in Iraq. When he finished his military service and enrolled at NJIT, Jay’s motivation pushed him to the top of his class. Most recently, the Newark College of Engineering named him the Outstanding Senior in electrical and computer engineering. He also spent six months interning at the Picatinny Arsenal, where he did so well that the Army recently offered him a full-time job as a Radar Antenna and Radio Frequency Systems engineer. The Army, moreover, will pay for him to attend graduate school. He plans to get his master’s degree in electrical engineering.

Luis Mendez ’14 graduated from the Albert Dorman Honors College in three and a half years, a semester early, and has already begun working as an engineer at ExxonMobil in Baton Rouge. His family immigrated to America from Guatemala when Luis was nine years old. He participated in Project SEED, a program that helps economically disadvantaged high school students learn about scientific careers. The program allowed him to do research at NJIT for two summers. At NJIT, he also married Elaine Gomez ’14, a chemical engineering major who also attended Union City schools and the Albert Dorman Honors College. In the fall, Elaine will enter the doctoral program in chemical engineering at Columbia University with an impressive level of funding, having recently won a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship, a generous three-year grant that will allow her to focus intensively on research as she pursues her degree.

Isaac Daudelin ‘14, a biology major from Hackettstown, is graduating from NJIT in three years with a 4.0 grade-point average and a full ride to the Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, where he will pursue a M.D./Ph.D. joint program, offered to only the top students in the nation. He’s accomplished all this never having attended a formal elementary or high school: Isaac was homeschooled, like all nine of his siblings, four of whom attend or have attended the Albert Dorman Honors College. Read more about Isaac at:

Margaret Christian ’14, a biomedical engineering major from Lake Hopatcong, was accepted into the nation’s top medical schools and, after much deliberation, will attend Columbia University Medical School in the fall. At NJIT, she designed a surgical device that reduces the time it takes surgeons to repair heart valves. She’s now developing a prototype for the device, which she spoke about during a recent TEDx talk. NJIT’s Newark College of Engineering recently named her the Outstanding Senior in her major.

Martina Jackson ’14, a biology major from South Brunswick, combined an abiding love of animals with a passion for science to earn herself a spot next fall at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine—one of seven schools that accepted her. Jackson, an Albert Dorman Honors College Scholar who minored in philosophy and applied ethics, said her interest in becoming a veterinarian transcends the clinical. “Some people think of themselves as dominant to animals, but I believe there is life beyond ours and I am really interested in our relationship with them. We depend on them,” she says.


On May 21, At Rutgers Newark,  the first female chancellor in Rutgers history, Nancy Cantor, will make some history together. She will preside over her first commencement at RU-N, and it will be the first multi-school ceremony in the 100-year-plus history of RU-N. Some 3,000 graduates will receive undergraduate, master’s and doctoral degrees, while the founder and chief executive officer of Audible, Inc., Donald Katz, will receive an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree and give the commencement address. The program begins at 9 a.m. at the Prudential Center in Newark.


Participating in the ceremonies will be graduating students from the Newark College of Arts and Sciences, University College-Newark, the Graduate School-Newark, the Rutgers Business School-Newark and New Brunswick; the School of Criminal Justice and the School of Public Affairs and Administration.  Donald Katz is founder and chief executive officer of Newark-based Audible, Inc., the leading provider of premium digital spoken audio information and entertainment on the Internet, serving millions of listeners and offering more than 150,000 downloadable audiobooks, audio editions of periodicals, and other programs.  Prior to founding Audible in 1995, Katz was a journalist and author for 20 years. His work won a National Magazine Award, an Overseas Press Club Award, the Chicago Tribune Heartland Prize for Nonfiction, and was nominated for a National Book Critics Circle Award, among other prizes.

Under Katz’s leadership, commercialized the first portable digital audio player in 1997, four years before the introduction of the iPod. Audible is the exclusive supplier of audiobooks to Apple’s iTunes Store worldwide and operates 12 global outlets including in London, in Berlin, and in Paris. Audible was acquired by, Inc., in 2008 and is now an subsidiary.

Katz graduated from New York University in 1974, where he studied with novelist Ralph Ellison. He attributes his fascination with audio to Ellison, who emphasized the role of oral and vernacular culture as a fundamental underpinning of American literature. Katz also attended The University of Chicago as well as The London School of Economics, from which he holds a master of science in economics. He lives in Montclair, New Jersey, where he served as a member of the public library board for nine years. He has served on the board of Uncommon Schools, a nonprofit organization that manages several of the most outstanding urban college preparatory charter schools in the Northeast, since the organization was founded in 1997. In February 2014, he was named chair of Newark’s Brick City Development Corporation.

Approximately 230 law graduates will hear remarks from Rutgers Senior Vice President and General Counsel John J. Farmer Jr. during a combined commencement and graduation recognition program.

Ceremonies will take place for NJIT, Rutgers Newark, Kean University, Seton Hall Law School, and Essex County College on those mornings listed below.


· Tuesday, May 20, from 6:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.,   New Jersey Institute of Technology

· Wednesday, May 21, from 6:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.    The Rutger School of Law  Newark, at the Performing Art Center

· Thursday, May 22, from 6:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.  Rutgers School of College of Nursing, and Kean University

· Friday, May 23, from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m., Seton Hall Law School at  Prudential Center

· Friday, May 30, from 6:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., Essex County College at Prudential Center

Essex Grad

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