Date: April 24, 2012
Contact: Eric Matanyi
Governors State University
Phone: (708) 534-4044
For Immediate Release
Two Governors State Graduates Chosen as Commencement Speakers
University Park, Illinois, April 24, 2012 - Governors State University will award bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees to more than 2,400 graduates at its Commencement. For the first time, GSU will host two ceremonies on a single day.
Two graduating GSU students have been chosen to give Commencement addresses. Erin Fletcher, a Richton Park resident, will speak at the 10 a.m. ceremony. Fredi Parks, of Park Forest, will speak at the 5 p.m. ceremony. Fletcher and Parks were both nominated as speakers by faculty members and chosen as worthy representatives of the Class of 2012.
Fletcher is receiving a bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies. A mother of four, Fletcher enrolled at GSU in 2009 after she lost her private sector job. She worked for 25 years in logistics management, credit and collection management, and accounting. “It was an epiphany for me,” she says. “And I found that this particular program was perfect for someone with my experience.”
Fletcher was recently elected to a one-year term as student trustee on the GSU Board of Trustees. She is a two-term student senator, a member of the Black Student Union, the Wellness Club, and the Honors Council, which provides input on the year Honors Program lecture series and other activities. She is working toward a master’s degree in communications and plans to pursue an Ed.D. in Leadership through GSU’s College of Education.
Fredi Parks is receiving a master’s degree in education. Parks says she always knew she wanted to be a teacher. After working 12 years for a not-for-profit foundation, she entered GSU’s Alternative Certification program, which trains career changers for the classroom and prepares them for careers in challenging, underserved schools. Parks, who has four children, is now teaching sixth grade at Maya Angelou School in Harvey.
“I met a new me through the Alt Cert program,” Parks says. “I can’t say enough about my professors – their standards of excellence made all this possible. Learning here is the best way to learn. GSU, as it turns out, is a bright and shining star.”
Governors State University Spring Commencement will take place on Saturday, May 19, at 10 a.m. and 5 p.m., at the Tinley Park Convention Center, Tinley Park, Illinois. Admission is by ticket only.