Marlboro College Graduate and professional studies 2015 Commencement

"Marlboro provided me with multiple reflective mirrors in the form of amazing colleagues, mentors, and kindred spirits who helped me see, cultivate, and embody more of my strengths," said graduate speaker Jodi Clark, who received her MS in Managing Mission-Driven Organizations on August 22, 2015. Marlboro College held its 18th graduate and professional studies commencement on that day, when faculty, friends, and family celebrated 44 students at Centre Congregational Church, in Brattleboro. Former Governer Madeleine Kunin delivered the commencement address, drawing from her wealth of experience in government and civil society. 

"With all the things you are doing in your lives already, I urge you to be activist citizens," Kunin told the graduates. "Impossible is not a fact. Impossible is an attitude, and I think you have that kind of long-range vision. Not accepting the word 'impossible' as you chart your next course is very important."

Graduates heard from two of their peers, chosen by the degree chairs based on the story of their learning journey. In addition to Jodi, who also received her undergraduate degree from Marlboro and worked for the college for many years, graduates heard from and John Pfordresher, who received an MA in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages.

"I expected to challenge and be challenged, and for the last 16 months that is exactly what I've gotten," he said. "I've acquired the knowledge and experience necessary to succeed in my field, and put my theory and my learning into practice." Kevin Quigley, in his first official duty as Marlboro College president, addressed the graduates to express the college community’s pride in their accomplishments and thanked their families for their support. He also asserted that the degrees they have earned, and the lessons along the way, come with expectations of greater contribution to their communities.

“Our expectations are quite different than those expressed in an ironic poem titled “M.A.,” by Marlboro College’s founding president, Walter Hendricks. He wrote, “Now that I have acquired these letters, I'll do my best to worst my betters.”

Watch commencement online: