DSU holds commencement for largest group of graduates
By CHUCK CLEMENT, Staff Reporter
The newest appointee to the South Dakota Board of Regents told the graduates attending the 2013 spring commencement at Dakota State University that "there are no limits," especially for those individuals who make the right decisions in life.|
Regent Bob Sutton delivered the commencement address on Saturday at the DSU Fieldhouse. Sutton spoke to the largest group of graduates in DSU's history, consisting of 284 graduates, according to David Borofsky, DSU president.
In speaking to the graduates, Sutton advised them to spend the upcoming summer and perhaps the next four to five years of their lives "seeking their passions."
"The greatest risk in life is not taking enough risks," Sutton said.
He referred to a university commencement address delivered by Anna Quindlen, a Pulitzer Prize-winning author, when she advised the graduates to "get a life in which you are not alone" and "get a life in which you are generous."
He quoted Quindlen as saying, "Get a life. A real life, not a manic pursuit of the next promotion, the bigger paycheck, the larger house."
Quindlen also advised the graduates that they couldn't be first-rate at their work if their work was all that they were.
Sutton finished his speech encouraging the graduates to not waste time in contributing to the rest of society, saying, "Please hurry; we could use a few more of you right away."
Harlan and Vianne Stensaas were presented with the university's Distinguished Alumni Award. Harlan Stensaas graduated from General Beadle State Teachers College (now DSU) in 1955 with a bachelor's degree in English. Vianne Stensaas completed the university's two-year teacher certification program in 1954 and returned for her junior year studies in 1956. She later earned a bachelor's degree from Dakota Wesleyan University in Mitchell.
The couple worked as educators at Chinese colleges and universities from 1996 to 2004, teaching at three teacher-training institutions and a medical university. They have retired and live in Oklahoma, but they continue to assist Chinese students with their dissertations and other writing projects.
DSU officials invited five alumni from the class of 1963 to attend Saturday's commencement as special guests -- Roselyn Buseman Klein of Roseville, Minn.; Dean Austad of Sioux Falls; Farrel Jacobsen of Badger; Isabelle Gebhart Short of Aurora; and Richard Wagner of Esterville, Iowa.
Maury and Alice Poppen of Madison received the 2013 Philanthropists of the Year award for their support of DSU through the annual Champion Scholarships and memberships in the Seizing South Dakota Club and Prairie Educators Lifetime Giving Society at DSU.
Maury Poppen graduated from GBSTC in 1959. While enrolled at General Beadle, he played on the university's basketball team and was inducted into the DSU Athletic Hall of Fame in 2003.
Alice Poppen enrolled as a nontraditional student here in 1980-81 and was later employed by the U.S. District Court System in Rapid City until her retirement in 2002. She returned to Madison and serves as a trustee of the DSU Foundation, holding the position of chairwoman from 2008-12.
Borofsky presented Cecelia Wittmayer, vice president for academic affairs, and Linda Brozik, executive administrative assistant at DSU, with Distinguished Service Awards.
©Madison Daily Leader 2013
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