More Than 900 Degrees to Be Awarded at Gannon University’s Spring Commencement

Posted: May 5, 2017

Gannon University President Keith Taylor, Ph.D., will recognize graduates at the University's Spring Commencement ceremony, to be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, May 6 at Erie Insurance Arena.

Gannon will award 902 degrees, including 55 doctoral degrees, 381 master's degrees, 448 bachelor's degrees and 18 associate's degrees. Forty-eight students will graduate summa cum laude. Students from 17 nations will be earning degrees on Saturday.

Including students earning degrees at the December 2016 ceremony, Gannon University will have a graduating class of nearly 1,200 for the 2016-17 Academic Year in the University's three academic Colleges: the College of Engineering and Business, the College of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences and the Morosky College of Health Professions and Sciences. Additionally, six Gannon University cadets from the Pride of PA Battalion, U.S. Army ROTC will be commissioned as second lieutenants in a morning ceremony.

This year's keynote speaker is the Most Rev. Robert Lynch who retired in November as Bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of St. Petersburg, Florida. Bishop Lynch will be awarded a Doctor of Humane Letters degree, honoris causa at the ceremony.

Commencement Events:

Time: 8:30 a.m.
Location: Gannon University, Schuster Theatre, 620 Sassafras St.

Time: 10 a.m.
Location: St. Peter Cathedral, 230 W. 10th St.


Time: 1-1:50 p.m.
Location: Erie Insurance Arena, 809 French St.
Interviews: Lawrence T. Persico, Bishop, Diocese of Erie; Keith Taylor, Ph.D., President, Gannon University; The Most Rev. Robert Lynch, Commencement speaker


Location: Erie Insurance Arena

Time: 2 p.m.
Location: Erie Insurance Arena

About the speaker

The Most Rev. Robert Lynch is a native of Charleston, West Virginia. He was formally ordained and installed as the fourth Bishop of the Diocese of St. Petersburg on Jan. 26, 1996 and retired on November 27, 2016.

He received his Bachelor of Arts Degree from the Pontifical College Josephinum and a M. Div. from Pope John XXIII National Seminary in 1978.

During the ten-year period between his college seminary and re-entry into theology, Bishop Lynch taught high school, organized a lay teachers association in the Diocese of Columbus, served the Catholic Conference of Ohio as coordinator of government programs, and served at the NCCB/USCC at the invitation of the late Cardinal Joseph Bernardin.

Shortly after priestly ordination, Bishop Lynch was assigned to St. John Vianney College Seminary in Miami as president-rector where he remained for five years.

He returned to the NCCB/USCC to serve as associate general secretary with responsibility for public policy and later as general secretary. One of the highlights of his years in Washington, D.C., was the opportunity to coordinate the pastoral visits by Pope John Paul II.

In addition to his role as Bishop of the Diocese of St. Petersburg, Bishop Lynch has served as the secretary of the Florida Catholic Conference, and he is currently a member of the board of trustees of the Saint Vincent de Paul and St. John Vianney Seminaries. He is a member of U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, the Episcopal Advisory Board of the Cause for Beatification of Archbishop Fulton Sheen, and the Maryknoll Bishops Advisory Committee.

Bishop Lynch served as elected Chairman of the Board for Catholic Relief Services from 2002 until 2007, as consultant to the Board of Catholic Health Association through 2013, as a member of the board of trustees of St. Leo University through 2016, and as a member of the Catholic Medical Mission Board through 2016. He was instrumental in the creation of Gannon University's Ruskin, Florida campus and assisted with the Blessing and Dedication in August 2015.


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