North Dakota State University's Winter Commencement ceremony is scheduled for Friday, Dec. 20, at 4 p.m. at the Bison Sports Arena.
A total of 957 graduate, professional and undergraduate students are eligible to participate and 551 have indicated they intend to march in the ceremony, as of Dec. 13.
"We have about 40 more students participating compared to a year ago, making this our largest winter commencement ceremony," said Rhonda Kitch, associate registrar. "That's exciting for us."
The student speaker for the ceremony will be Anna C. Pieri, a native of Fargo. She will receive a Bachelor of Fine Arts, majoring in theatre arts. Highly active in NDSU Theatre, Pieri was the senior member of the student-run audience building committee and was elected company deputy for several productions. In 2009, Pieri took a hiatus from her studies to manage a store and coach a high school debate team. But she returned to NDSU and quickly became a recognized student leader in the theatre department. She was wardrobe master for "9 to 5, The Musical," and performed such diverse roles as an Indian goddess, Clytemnestra from Greek mythology and a Chekhovian diva. This past year, she was the student representative on the Little Country Theatre Centennial Celebration Committee.
Jace Beehler, from Grand Forks, N.D, will be commencement soloist. He will receive a Bachelor of Music. The former president of the NDSU Concert Choir and student director for the Statesman Men's Choir, Beehler was a member of the Madrigal Singers, BisonArts musical group and Gold Star Marching Band. He lists the Concert Choir's European tour to Croatia and Italy and the Gala Concert at the Ordway Center for the Performing Arts as his favorite musical experiences. Highly active during his academic career, Beehler is a former student body vice president, academic affairs student representative at the North Dakota Student Association, executive commissioner of academic and student affairs for NDSU Student Government and president of Blue Key Honor Society.
For the latest commencement information, parking and location updates, visit www.ndsu.edu/commencement. Also on that webpage, the ceremony will be live streamed and available for archived viewing.