Hanes Tells Penn State DuBois Grads, 'Share Victory' with Loved Ones
Madlyn Hanes reminded the nearly 100 graduates and their families and friends that support from others is critical to individual success during her commencement address at Penn State DuBois on Saturday. Hanes is vice president of the Commonwealth Campuses and dean of the University College of the Pennsylvania State University, and served as special guest speaker for commencement ceremonies.
"Graduates, this is your day, and we are all gathered in celebration and recognition of your good work and knowing that many of you reached your educational goals, and completed your degrees while balancing the demands of work and family along with your pursuit of higher education," Hanes said. "Today’s celebration is a particularly momentous occasion, and a sweet, sweet victory. Congratulations, graduates. We applaud you."
Hanes then asked the graduates to acknowledge the people who supported them in various ways as they worked toward completing their degrees.
"Most graduates tell me that they were helped along the way by family and friends who encouraged them, supported them, remained patient with them, especially during crunch times when papers and presentations came due and studying for mid-terms and finals required their complete attention," remarked Hanes. "The graduates before us today have family and friends who kept life’s everyday distractions from interrupting their progress toward graduation. Today is a shared victory and we have them to thank as well."
The message Hanes shared about appreciation for support came from her own experiences, which she also shared. She said, "I, like many of you, was the first in my family to complete college, and go on to graduate school to earn a master’s and Ph.D.
The story of my own educational journey begins, like many others begin, with family.
I could not have succeeded without the help of my family."
Recognizing the closely knit community on campus, Hanes also credited professionals at Penn State DuBois for going above and beyond the call of duty for students.
"Our talented faculty who taught you content, yes, but who inspired and mentored you, who helped you find your voices and express yourselves, who challenged you as learners to aim high and higher still," Hanes said. "And the dedicated staff and administrators who assisted you in your journey, supported your learning, directed you to needed resources, and engaged you in co-curricular activities and leadership opportunities.
The faculty, staff and administration of Penn State DuBois welcomed you as a valued member of the campus community."
In the end, Hanes stressed that all types of support that students receive is a gift that helps to make the greatest achievements possible. Among the greatest achievements in anyone's life, Hanes said, is earning an education.
"Education is a great equalizer. No matter your background, education levels the playing field and opens doors as easily for those who were first in their families to go to college as for those who followed generations of college educated family members," Hanes said. She then asked graduates to, in turn, offer to others the same kindness that has been offered to them. "I hope that each of you, in time, becomes someone else’s champion, someone else’s hero."
Hanes has executive oversight for the 20 Commonwealth Campuses, including Penn State DuBois. Those campuses enroll 34,000 students in associate, baccalaureate, and graduate degrees. She provides leadership for Penn State's multiple missions across the Commonwealth. In addition, as the Dean of the University College, Hanes provides academic leadership on curricular matters and promotion and tenure reviews for 14 of the campuses, which comprise the University College.
From 2000-2010, Hanes served as Chancellor of Penn State Harrisburg, the Capital College. Hanes joined Penn State in 1988 as the chief academic officer of Penn State Delaware County, now Penn State Brandywine. In 1997, she was named chief executive officer of Penn State Great Valley, the graduate campus of Penn State serving southeastern Pennsylvania, and in 1998, founding head of its School of Graduate Professional Studies.
Hanes earned a B.A. with high honors in English education, M.A. in speech-language pathology, and Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction, with a specialization in language and literacy development, from the University of Florida. In 2008, the University of Florida honored her with the University Distinguished Alumnus Award.
Penn State DuBois Chancellor Anita McDonald presided over the commencement ceremony and conferred degrees. Senior Instructor in Education Pamela Hufnagel served as faculty marshal.
"I am confident that each one of you will make contributions to our society and our world in your own, unique way," McDonald told the graduates.