Fall 2021 Commencement Set for Dec. 17-18

Stack of diplomas

KUTZTOWN, Pa. – More than 475 students will be awarded degrees during Kutztown University's fall commencement Dec. 17-18, at O'Pake Fieldhouse. Dr. Kenneth S. Hawkinson, university president, and Dr. Lorin Basden Arnold, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs, will preside.

KU's graduate ceremony for master's degree candidates is 5 p.m., Friday, Dec. 17. The undergraduate ceremony is 10 a.m., Saturday, Dec. 18.

Two graduating seniors and one faculty member will speak at the ceremony. Kamar Bennett will serve as the graduate speaker, Jordan A. Metzger will serve as the undergraduate speaker and Dr. Julia L. Hovanec, associate professor of art education, will serve as the faculty speaker.

An honorary doctorate, Doctor of Pedagogy, will be conferred upon Nancy Jean Stump Seiger '54 during Saturday's ceremony.

Kutztown University will provide complete coverage, including live video, photos and more, of its commencement ceremonies. A special thank you to students and professors from the Department of Cinema, Television and Media Production for teaming with the Marketing and Communications office to provide live coverage. Further information on commencement coverage can be found on the commencement coverage website.

Faculty speaker, Dr. Julia L. Hovanec, associate professor of art education, has taught art for more than 34 years, beginning as an elementary and middle school art teacher in The School District of the City of York. In 2011, she earned her doctorate at Capella University with research focused on preservice art educators, professional identity construction and reflective practice.

At KU, Hovanec inspires undergraduate and graduate art education students and general education students alike. One of her major roles is supervising student teachers. She served as department chair from 2017 to 2020.

Hovanec has presented on a range of topics at local, regional, state and national conferences and facilitated many professional development workshops and seminars. In those presentations, she shares her research on interdisciplinary teaching and learning, literacy, visual literacy, picture books and reflective practice. In 2019, she was honored as the Outstanding Higher Education Art Educator Award recipient by the Pennsylvania Art Education Association.

Graduate speaker, Kamar Bennett, of Brooklyn, N.Y., graduates with a Master of Education in secondary education. During his time at KU, Bennett worked and interned with Berks Nature and the Delaware Watershed Alliance. He educated the inner-city public, including adults, children and adolescents of Reading, on the effects of watershed. He also worked with the One World Program in partnership with Alvernia University.

This program provides extraordinary opportunities for elementary students in urban areas. During the One World Program, Bennett educated students on animal habits and the effects of waste on the environment. Bennett hosted educational field trips through the Olivet Boys and Girls Club program, teaching students about environmental preservation and the importance of taking action within your community.

Bennett graduated from Kutztown University in 2014 with a Bachelor of Science in business administration. Bennett plans to spend time with his newborn son while seeking a full-time teaching position in science within an urban school district. His goal is to engage scholars in an interactive way that increases their understanding of the scientific world around them.

Undergraduate speaker, Jordan A. Metzger, of Milford, Pa., graduates summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in communication studies and minors in case management and entrepreneurship.

During her time at KU, Metzger served as an admissions tour guide and interned as a branding consultant at Lehigh Insurance Agency and Yutz-Merkle Insurance. She held jobs at Candy and Gift Cottage and Pike County Outfitters, where she cashiered. Her position as a tour guide, intern and cashier immersed her in different environments, where she gained a wide range of skills and experience.

Metzger achieved the dean's list every semester and serves as a student representative on KU's Marketing and Communications Advisory Board. Metzger was inducted into the National Society of Leadership and Success and was elected as the event planner for Phi Sigma Sigma, where she planned events for the sorority. While at KU, she earned the role of Service Chair for Epsilon Sigma Alpha, for which she planned service events and created networks. Metzger competed in KU’s Business Idea Competition and was a finalist.

For more information, visit www.kutztown.edu/commencement.