A&M System Chancellor to speak at A&M Galveston commencement    

Texas A&M University at Galveston will hold the institution’s Spring 2014 Commencement at 9 am on Saturday May 10 at the Galveston Island Convention Center, 5600 Seawall Blvd. A total of 168 bachelor’s degrees, 23 master’s degrees and one doctoral degree are slated to be awarded.

sharpGuest speaker will be Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp. As chancellor of The Texas A&M University System, John Sharp leads the 19-members, which includes 11 universities, seven state agencies, two service units and a health science center.

Chancellor Sharp brings with him more than three decades of public service, and a passion to make the A&M System the best system of higher education in the country.

Sharp earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from Texas A&M University in 1972, where he was student body president and a member of the Corps staff of the Corps of Cadets. Upon graduation, he was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the United States Army Reserves. In 1976, Sharp received a master’s degree in public administration from Southwest Texas State University while working full-time with the Legislative Budget Board in Austin.

In 1978, he was elected to the Texas House of Representatives and was named “Outstanding Freshman” by Texas Monthly.  He won a seat in the Texas Senate in 1982, where he served on the powerful Senate Finance Committee, and was elected to the Texas Railroad Commission in 1986. Sharp was elected state comptroller in 1990 and re-elected in 1994. Sharp was appointed chancellor of The Texas A&M University System by the Board of Regents on Sept. 6, 2011.

During the ceremony, several awards will be presented. The George P. Mitchell Society’s Outstanding Undergraduate Student Awards for Academic and Leadership Excellence sponsored by the A&M Galveston Board of Visitors is presented to a student from each class who has demonstrated outstanding achievement in classroom and laboratory work, as well as in student activities.

The Edwin Eikel Outstanding Student Award is given to the graduate who has best demonstrated the qualities of leadership, patriotism, fortitude, intelligence, courage, humility and the many other sterling traits of character exemplified by Edwin Eikel, former president of Intracoastal Towing and Transportation Corporation.

To complete the ceremony, the student with the highest grade point average in the class will be observing an A&M Galveston commencement tradition by striking a ship’s bell eight times. This observance is a reflection of the time-honored sea tradition of striking a bell eight times on a ship to acknowledge a change of watch. Here it recognizes that the current graduating class has achieved their goals and the graduates are embarking on the next stage of their lives.