Oklahoma State University recognized an estimated 3,500 graduates Friday and Saturday during its 133rd commencement ceremonies at Gallagher-Iba Arena.
Saturday’s three undergraduate commencement ceremonies before a packed crowd at Gallagher-Iba Arena honored many graduating members of OSU’s largest freshman class of more than 4,200 in fall of 2012. The OSU Center for Veterinary Health Sciences and OSU Graduate College held their commencements Friday.
During the first undergraduate ceremony Saturday morning, OSU President Burns Hargis presented the Henry G. Bennett Distinguished Service Award to Billie and Ross McKnight, who were honored for their visionary leadership and dedicated service to their alma mater. Most recently the McKnights gave $25 million to establish a programming endowment for The McKnight Center for the Performing Arts at Oklahoma State University.
The undergraduate commencement speakers were Chickasaw Nation Governor Bill Anoatubby and recording industry executive Tim Dubois, an OSU alumnus. Both also received the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Humane Letters for their accomplishments and service to others.
“This is your time, and you can make a profound and lasting difference in the world.” Anoatubby told graduates. “Be ready for success. Opportunities often arise when you least expect them and we can miss some of those opportunities and openings if we’re guarding against failure. Remember, people who don’t make mistakes are not really doing anything.”
“You may think you have your life figured out,” Dubois said. “You may have a vision of where you think this all goes. Your imagination is not big enough. You cannot imagine all the doors of opportunity that are going to open for you. Don’t be afraid to stick your head in those doors.”