Press Releases

May 22, 2005

Southampton College Graduates Record Number of Students.

Pekka Paavonpera (

Southampton, NY – Southampton College of Long Island University today celebrated the achievements of a record 457 student at this year’s Commencement Ceremonies held on the campus.

University President David J. Steinberg conferred degrees to 310 undergraduates and 147 graduates at what was the 39th commencement at Southampton College and the last Commencement at the campus which will honor undergraduate students. During the fall of 2005, Southampton College’s undergraduate programs will be relocated to the CW Post Campus on Long Island University. Southampton College will continue to offer its graduate programs in English and writing and education. The College’s School of Continuing Education, and the Children’s School will also continue offering their services on Campus, as will WLIU 88.3 FM, the Flagship of the Long Island University Public Radio Network.

First District Congressman Tim Bishop (D-Southampton) was The Commencement Speaker. Bishop served Southampton College for 29 years, the last 17 as Provost.

Award-winning television correspondent and co-editor of “60 minutes”, Steve Kroft was awarded an Honorary Doctor of humane letters.

            Two men who have for the better part of their working lives dedicated themselves to the advancement of Southampton College students – Professors Robert Gerbereux and John “Ral” Welker also received Honorary Degrees.

            For 39 years, Prof Gerbereux helped Southampton College students to harness the power of information. He began his career at the campus as a reference librarian and instructor. Over the years, Mr. Gerbereux held positions of increasing responsibility, including head reference librarian, director of the Audio Visual Department, assistant professor and associate professor before assuming his current duties as a full professor and the Director of the Southampton College Library.

            Prof John “Ral” Welker was one of the architects of Southampton College’s renowned marine science program. Under his watchful eye, the program flourished, becoming the College’s flagship offering and bringing the institution into the national spotlight.

            Each year, Distinguished AlumnusAwards are presented to extraordinary Southampton College graduates. This year’s recipients were Kate Hutchison, class of 84, Vice President of Marketing for Citrix; and Frank Iovino, class of 81, Vice President and General Manager of Cingular Wireless Washington/Baltimore

            The Suffolk County Secondary School Teacher of the Year Award was presented to Peter Solow. He is art teacher at Pierson High School, Sag Harbor, and also a highly accomplished artist, whose work can be found in the permanent collections of several world-renowned museums.

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