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Colby-Sawyer College to Celebrate 2014 Commencement

Colby-Sawyer College will celebrate its 2014 Commencement on Saturday, May 10, graduating 219 students and recognizing them and other individuals for academic excellence, outstanding contributions to society, and service to the college and community. The ceremony will be held at 10:30 a.m. on the college's front lawn.

Colby-Sawyer will recognize members of the Class of 2014 for outstanding achievement as scholars and campus leaders.

Nicholas Ciarlante, a Business Administration major and Political Studies minor from Stoneham, Mass., has been selected as the Senior Commencement Speaker and will deliver an address titled “A New Beginning.” Ciarlante has demonstrated extraordinary leadership and dedication to the college from the moment he arrived on campus, and has served as president of the Student Government Association for three years.

The Colby-Sawyer Award, given to the senior who exemplifies the college's ideals of personal dignity, intellectual growth and contributions to campus life, will also be presented to Nicholas Ciarlante. Tireless in his devotion to the college and the pursuit of his goals, Nick has been an asset to the college community while always sporting a smile, a listening ear and bountiful understanding. This fall, Ciarlante will begin a master's degree in Professional Studies in Legislative Affairs at George Washington University's Graduate School of Political Management. He hopes to run for public office and create legislation that positively impacts people in need.

The David H. Winton Baccalaureate Award, which recognizes the graduating student with the highest cumulative grade point average, will be announced at Commencement.

Community Awards

Colby-Sawyer will recognize these members of the college and greater community for outstanding contributions to the life of Colby-Sawyer and its students.

Janet “Jan” Udall Schaefer '52, a resident of Peterborough, N.H., will receive the college's highest award, the Susan Colgate Cleveland Medal for Distinguished Service, for her sustained dedication to the college and community. The daughter of parents who believed in education and sacrificed to make hers possible, she established the Udall Endowed Scholarship in 1990 in their honor. She also established the Janet U. Schaefer Memorial Fund, and has named the college a beneficiary of her estate.

Assistant Professor of Environmental Sciences Harvey J. Pine, Ph.D., will receive the Jack Jensen Award for Excellence in Teaching, the college's highest faculty award, and deliver the Commencement Address. Professor Pine joined the college in 2008 and teaches courses in climate change and geology. Animated, enthusiastic and committed to student learning, he is known for his wealth of knowledge, high expectations and the passion that he shows in his teaching. Professor Pine, an Andover resident, earned a B.S. at Muhlenberg College and an M.S. and Ph.D. at Auburn University.

The Nancy Beyer Opler '56 Award for Excellence in Advising will be given to Dr. Iris Fischer-McMorrow, assistant professor of Natural Sciences. A resident of Henniker, she joined the faculty in 2011, is a licensed veterinarian in New Hampshire, and teaches courses in anatomy and physiology. Professor Fischer-McMorrow advises biology majors and those interested in pursuing graduate studies in the health professions. Professor Fischer-McMorrow earned a B.A. at Mount Holyoke College and a M.V.B. in Veterinary Medicine from University College Dublin.

The Town Award will be presented to the Adventures in Learning (AIL) Board of Directors in recognition of the versatile learning opportunities it offers to residents of New London and the region. Board members Joanna Henderson, president, and Julie Machen, president-elect, both of New London, will accept the award on behalf of AIL.

Created in 1998 and sponsored by Colby-Sawyer College, the community-based AIL offers peer-learning experiences to nearly 500 members who relish the opportunity to continue their intellectual growth and experience the joy of learning.

For its exceptional service to adult learners in the New London area, the Gown Award will be given to Adventures in Learning. Colby-Sawyer staff members and program coordinators Marianne Harrison of New London and Janet St. Laurent will accept the award.

The Judith Pond Condict '62 Award for Excellence in Service will be presented to Bonnie Adamski Lewis '71 in recognition of her exemplary work accomplishments and her outstanding contributions to the college and its mission of educating students. Lewis, a resident of Wilmot, is the manager of the Colby-Sawyer/Lake Sunapee Protective Association satellite laboratory at Colby-Sawyer and the work-study supervisor for the Natural Sciences Department. She has the distinction of having been nominated for the award by staff, faculty, students and alumni.

Lewis joined the college in 1999 and holds a B.S. in Medical Technology.

The Distinguished Alumni Award will be presented to Kurt Svoboda, a magna cum laude graduate of the Class of 2000. In addition to supporting the Colby-Sawyer Fund and Colby-Sawyer Athletics, Svoboda advises students in professional preparation, provides internship opportunities and shares his expertise on panels, including the 2014 Exercise and Sport Science Symposium. A resident of Palo Alto, Calif., Svoboda is the Senior Assistant Athletics Director of Media Relations and Communications at Stanford University. He holds a B.S. in Exercise & Sport Sciences from Colby-Sawyer and a master's degree in Management from Harvard University, where he previously served as chief public and media relations executive for the athletic department.

An Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters (L.H.D.) will be presented to Assistant Professor of Business Administration Anthony N. “Tony” Quinn in recognition of his 22 years of teaching at Colby-Sawyer. Prior to joining the business faculty in 1992, Tony owned Quinn Business Brokerage; worked in sales, customer relations, and marketing management for IBM Corporation for 25 years; and served as a research economist for HP Hood LLC in Boston. He earned a B.S. from Cornell University in 1958 and a M.S. from University of Vermont in 1960.

To learn more about 2014 Commencement, visit

Colby-Sawyer College is a comprehensive college that integrates the liberal arts and sciences with professional preparation. Founded in 1837, Colby-Sawyer is located in the scenic Lake Sunapee Region of central New Hampshire. Learn more about the college's vibrant teaching and learning community at

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