Sutton to speak at DSU commencement
The newest member of the South Dakota Board of Regents will speak to the 2013 graduating class at Dakota State University on Saturday at the Fieldhouse.|
The 10:30 a.m. ceremony features 284 graduates. Officials will issue 190 baccalaureate, 37 master's, four doctor of science and 53 associate's degrees. Students graduating this summer with baccalaureate and associate's degrees are included in the spring ceremony.
Regent Bob Sutton, who is also vice president for community relations at Avera Health, is this year's commencement speaker. Sutton is holds a bachelor's degree in political science and a master's degree in public administration, both from the University of South Dakota. He was appointed to the Board of Regents in April.
Speaking on behalf of the graduating class is Rebecca Arleen Woelfel from Wabasso, Minn. She is graduating Summa Cum Laude with a double major in information systems and computer & network security.
Distinguished alumni awards will be issued to Harlan and Vianne Stensaas, both graduates of General Beadle State Teachers College (now DSU).
Harlan Stensaas earned his bachelor's degree in English education in 1955 from General Beadle and later earned a master's in journalism from South Dakota State University and a Ph.D in communications from the University of Southern Mississippi.
He served a short time as publicist for the state highway commission, promoting the proposed interstate highway project. He then taught journalism and photography at SDSU for several years before becoming public relations director for Dakota Wesleyan University. He later held faculty positions in Washington, Illinois and Oklahoma before seeking his Ph.D.
Vianne Stensaas earned a two-year teacher's certificate in 1954, completed a third year of education in 1956 and later earned a bachelor's degree in English and art at DWU.
After years of teaching elementary school, she changed her focus to adults, becoming a VISTA volunteer in adult literacy. She earned accreditation as a certified Laubach Literacy tutor/trainer and later became a certified tutor of English as a Second Language. She also received a certificate in pastoral counseling from Tulsa Bible Seminary.
From 1994 to 2006, the couple spent time overseas as educators in Chinese colleges and universities. Together they taught in three teacher-training institutions and a medical university. Although retired and living in Oklahoma, they remain involved in Chinese education. They assist Chinese scholars with language issues for dissertations and other writing projects, and they continue to provide guidance and counsel.
The ceremony will be streamed live online and can be accessed through the DSU website (www.dsu.edu).