I am happy to announce that His Eminence, Seán Cardinal O’Malley, O.F.M. Cap., of the Archdiocese of Boston, will be the speaker for Ave Maria University’s 12th commencement exercises in May. I am thrilled that Cardinal O’Malley, an Ave Maria University alumnus and trustee, is able to be with us on this special day. I know our seniors and graduate students will be eager to hear his remarks and be in his company.
Cardinal O’Malley is a language scholar as well as a lover of the liberal arts, and in his capacity as Chairman of the Board of Trustees of The Catholic University of America (CUA), he is a prominent leader within Catholic higher education. His Eminence holds both Master’s and Doctoral degrees from CUA, and was a professor there for four years. His extraordinary life experiences, his close friendship with His Holiness Pope Francis, and his consistent advocacy for the sanctity of life, the dignity of the poor, and the need for joy and mercy in the lives of Christians, make him the ideal speaker in this Jubilee of Mercy. As you may know he serves as a member of the group of eight Cardinals assisting the Holy Father in reforming the Church’s governance and central administration.
He also is no stranger to Florida, having served as Bishop of the Diocese of Palm Beach prior to his appointment in Boston. He has been a friend of Ave Maria from our earliest days and in 2010 received an honorary doctorate from the University.
Our commencement exercise will take place on May 7, 2016 in the Tom Golisano Field House. A record 211 undergraduate students are expected to receive diplomas, as well as 10 Master’s and 2 Ph.D. candidates. Recent commencement speakers at Ave Maria University include former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, Florida Governor Rick Scott, Librarian of Congress Dr. James Billington, Jr., and Dr. Arthur Brooks, president of the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, DC.
Along with our graduating seniors, as well as the members of our esteemed faculty and staff, I look forward to commencement and the presence of Cardinal O’Malley on our campus.