Commencement & Reunions 2010
Nelson Mandela was too feeble to make the trip from South Africa to Providence to accept his honorary degree, so Brown will send him a highlights video of the weekend. When actor Morgan Freeman stepped up to receive his honorary degree, he remarked that his own academic career had been so spotty that he'd told President Simmons the night before: "If a mistake has been made, I fully understand." Here are other highlights from the Big Weekend. Keep checking this page; there are more stories and photos to come.
Baccalaureate Address: David Rohde '90: "Our god" Held captive in Afghanistan and Pakistan for seven months, Rohde singled out a captain of the Pakistan Army as an example of hope and compassion and a dramatic contrast to the fanatical intolerance of his captors.
Commencement Portrait: Kate Kolbert-Hyle ’10: Kolbert-Hyle collaborated with other students to start a nonprofit organization to join small and large philanthropists with Rhode Island students who can't afford college.
Commencement Portrait: Masumi Hayashi-Smith ’10: The daughter of a Buddhist and an atheist, Smith discovered Buddhism and traveled to Sri Lanka to help mend the country's ethnic rifts.
Commencement Portrait: Eliana Castro ’09, ’10 MAT: After leaving the rural Dominican Republic for the urban mill town of Lawrence, Massachusetts, Castro felt lost. But a teacher who believed in her potential helped her believe in herself, and now Castro is returning to Lawrence as a teacher herself.
Commencement Portrait: Zohar Atkins ’10: During his first semester at Brown, Atkins took a course titled Good and Evil and fell in love with large ethical questions. He leaves for Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar, hoping to continue on as a scholar and a rabbi.
Commencement Portrait: Emily Taylor ’10: At first, teaching middle school was one of the hardest things Taylor had ever done. By the time she suited up for graduation, though, she'd become an award-winning teacher, determined to change the educational system one student at a time.
Senior Oration: Tan Nguyen ’10, ’10 AM: Nguyen, whose parents make and sell tofu in an open-air market in Vietnam describes what a tightrope walker on the College Green can teach graduating seniors about taking risks and playing it safe. Nguyen received both an undergraduate degree in applied math and economics and a master's in economics.
Senior Oration: Tatiana Gellein ’10: Gellein's mother worked three jobs to support her family in Seattle. "When people hear of Seattle," she says, "most think of Starbucks, Bill Gates, and Grey’s Anatomy. Very few consider the port city a breeding ground for severe poverty, with its fair share of housing projects and gun violence." Gellein, a whose undergraduate degree is part of the Program for Liberal Medical Education, will now go on to complete her medical degree at the Alpert Medical School at Brown.
The Medical School: How to Navigate the Post–Health Care Reform World The Warren Alpert Medical School graduates its first class of doctors since the world of medicine was transformed by the Obama health care reform bill. What will it mean for Brown's newest MDs? How can they know what their future holds.
The BAM Forum: What's Ahead for Newspapers and Magazines?: Moderated by BAM editor and publisher Norman Boucher, this first-annual BAM Commencement forum features four alumni prominent in newspapers and magazines discussing the future of their industry. Are we witnessing the end of print or the beginning of new kinds of digital publications? How will magazines and newspapers survive?