Billie Dragoo, founder and CEO of RepuCare, delivered the 2021 commencement address at Franklin College on Saturday, May 22, 2021, and was awarded an honorary doctorate of humane letters.
The college conferred 194 undergraduate degrees and 25 graduate degrees.
The ceremony was held in Stewart “Red” Faught Stadium, allowing for physical distancing of participants as well as guests. The event was also live-streamed on the college’s website.
Dragoo’s keynote address was titled “And Yet, Here You Are.”
“Looking over this crowd, I see incredible strength,” said Dragoo. “You have endured one of the most difficult years in the history of our country. A year of nationwide protests to end racial injustice, a contentious presidential election that tested our democracy, a worldwide recession, a global pandemic, and learning how to use this thing called Zoom that no one had even heard of two years ago.”
Dragoo offered several lessons of wisdom to assist the Class of 2021 on their path to success, but the one she believes to be most important is, “it matters how you play the game.”
“We need you to act with courage and integrity,” said Dragoo. “To become known as a person who will never sacrifice their principles and values for short term gains. We need you to seek out and discover the truth in every situation and to act in ways that benefit us all. Finally, we need you to show humility.”
Kerry N. Prather, Franklin College president, also offered remarks to the Class of 2021. “Wherever in the world your future may lie, I encourage you to be leaders. In a world fraught with conflict and division, be collaborators and unifiers. Lead with compassion. Create solutions. Share love and happiness.”
The senior class speaker was Charles Hall, a native of Owensboro, Ky., who majored in exercise science and double minored in fitness and chemistry. Hall has been accepted at the Kentucky College of Osteopathic Medicine, where he will take the next steps toward his goal of becoming a physician.
The top five majors in the graduating class were exercise science, business, biology, public relations and education.
Preceding commencement, on Friday, May 21, Dr. Leah Gunning Francis gave the baccalaureate address and received an honorary doctorate of divinity degree from the college. Francis serves as the vice president for academic affairs and dean of the faculty at Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis.
For more information, contact the Franklin College Office of Communications at (317) 738-8185.
POSTED May 22, 2021