WSU Commencement Celebrates Class of 2017

OGDEN, Utah — Weber State University officials expect the class of 2016-17 to total 5,557 graduates — the largest class on record. So far, 3,196 candidates have applied for spring graduation and will be honored on April 28 during WSU’s 149th commencement. Others received their diplomas during winter commencement ceremonies.

“This academic year, WSU expects to award a record number of degrees and certificates to graduates who are eager to pursue new dreams,” said WSU President Charles A. Wight. “That’s something to really celebrate on April 28!”

Graduates attending commencement in the Dee Events Center will receive a commemorative medallion to mark the occasion. The ceremony’s academic processional begins at 8 a.m., followed by the formal program and keynote address.

Karla K. Bergeson, an accomplished corporate legal executive, will deliver the keynote address and receive an honorary degree.

Bergeson is an Ogden native and BYU Law School graduate. She is the former executive vice president and deputy general counsel for Citigroup’s credit card business in the U.S., where she worked for 23 years before retiring. Throughout her career, Bergeson worked to support higher education in Northern Utah. At Weber State University, she and her cousins created a scholarship in her mother and aunt’s names to support students studying to become teachers. She later turned that scholarship into an endowment within the Jerry & Vickie Moyes College of Education. Bergeson also has served on WSU’s National Advisory Council since 2014 and was recognized with the university’s Lewis W. Shurtliff Award for Contributions to Education in 2015.

The 2017 Brady Presidential Distinguished Professors also will be honored during the ceremony. This year’s recipients are Stacy Palen, physics professor and director of the Ott Planetarium, and Michael Stevens, chair of the Department of Business Administration.

Thais Stewart will be the student speaker. She will graduate with bachelor’s degrees in public relations and political science. During her time at WSU, she served as chapter president of WSU’s Public Relations Student Society of America and completed an internship at the Utah State Capitol.

Beginning at 10 a.m., each of WSU’s academic colleges will hold individual convocations at various locations, where graduates will walk across the stage to receive their diplomas.

Lunch will be served in the Shepherd Union Atrium from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Each graduate received two complimentary tickets to the lunch at the time they picked up their caps and gowns. Additional tickets may be purchased for $11 at the Shepherd Union Information Desk.

“Putting Students Through,” a short program where graduates honor parents, spouses and friends who supported them, will be held on April 27 in the Shepherd Union Ballroom at 4 p.m.

To watch commencement live, visit By May 5, the commencement ceremony can be streamed on WSU’s YouTube channel at

Parking will be free throughout the day on April 28. Campus shuttle buses will run every five minutes from 7 a.m.-5:30 p.m. with stops on the east and west side of the Dee Events Center, Val A. Browning Center, Stewart Library and McKay Education Building.

American Sign Language services will be available at the Dee Events Center in Section S at the base of Portal 17. Graduates with special needs should contact the director of Services for Students with Disabilities, Don Guthrie at 801-626-6856.

Visit for more information on WSU’s commencement activities.

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Beverly Rudd, WSU university advancement coordinator
801-626-6468 •

Allison Barlow Hess, Director of Public Relations
801-626-7948 •