Tougaloo College celebrates success of 2024 Commencement Weekend

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JANS – Tougaloo College in Tougaloo, Mississippi, marked a memorable 2024 Commencement Weekend on May 3-5, showcasing achievements, dedication, and the enduring spirit of its community. The weekend’s events, highlighted by the Two Rivers Gala – Tougaloo Honors, the Carrie Ellen Rice Residence Hall Naming and Dedication Ceremony, and the 2024 Commencement Ceremony, surpassed expectations and left a lasting impression on attendees.

The weekend kicked off with the Two Rivers Gala – Tougaloo Honors, which was held at the Jackson Convention Complex. The event was cited as “history-making,” marking the largest turnout in its 19-year history. The gala celebrated three outstanding alumni whose contributions have made significant impacts on society: NAACP President and CEO Derrick Johnson, Rear Admiral Zeita Merchant, and Astrophysicist Dr. Hakeem Oluseyi. Attendees were treated to a memorable performance by the legendary O’Jays, adding an extra layer of celebration to the evening.

A notable moment of the weekend was the Carrie Ellen Rice Residence Hall Naming and Dedication Ceremony, named in honor of the grandmother of Tougaloo Alumna Ms. Carrie Lapsky Davis. Ms. Davis recently donated $1 million to the school, and the dedication was a heartfelt recognition of her generosity. The Carrie Ellen Rice Residence Hall Naming and Dedication Ceremony symbolizes the enduring legacy of support within the Tougaloo community.

The weekend reached its climax with the grand 2024 Commencement Ceremony, where Tougaloo College seniors and Master’s degree recipients were celebrated for their academic accomplishments. Dr. Cornell Brooks of the Harvard Kennedy School delivered an inspiring Baccalaureate address, setting the tone for the commencement proceedings. The Honorable Marcia L. Fudge, former HUD Secretary, served as the Commencement Speaker, imparting wisdom and encouragement to the graduating class.

Dr. Donzell Lee, President of Tougaloo College, expressed immense pride in the success of the weekend’s events. “Tougaloo College celebrates the achievements of our 2024 Commencement Weekend with immense pride,” said Dr. Lee. “These events honor the accomplishments of our students and alumni while highlighting the strength and unity of the Tougaloo community.”

The success of the weekend was made possible by the dedication and hard work of Tougaloo College’s constituents. Their support continues to drive Tougaloo College forward, empowering future generations of leaders.

Tougaloo College is globally recognized for its academic excellence and social commitment. Since its founding in 1869, the College has maintained its rich history and deep roots within the social justice framework, providing significant contributions of advocates, activists, and scholars to the world. Its legacy of distinction in higher education is centered around the high quality liberal arts studies curriculum and being among the top 25 U.S. institutions whose graduates go on to graduate or professional school. Its greatest mission is to prepare students to be lifelong learners who are committed to leadership and service in a global society.

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Tougaloo College celebrates success of 2024 Commencement Weekend

By Jackson Advocate News Service
May 20, 2024