Press Releases

TitleMore than 2,260 New USD Changemakers to Graduate in May
ContactLiz Harman
Contact E-mailharman, at
Contact Phone619 260-4682

Some 2,260 new University of San Diego Changemakers and graduates in business, education, law, liberal arts, nursing and peace studies are receiving their degrees this month.

A total of 1,941 students will graduate over Memorial Day weekend. The Law School graduation took place May 17.

Hundreds of graduates are San Diego residents whose family and friends will join them for the celebration. Many graduates are the first in their family to earn a college degree.

“We are proud to honor our graduates, knowing that they have acquired the knowledge, skills and ethics to be leaders and Changemakers in their chosen professions,” said USD President Mary E. Lyons.

This year’s valedictorians are Laura Gruninger for the College of Arts and Sciences and Jonathan Fuller from the School of Business Administration.

Gruninger, who has a 4.0 grade point average, earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a minor in sociology. She plans to do field work, perhaps in social work or the criminal justice system before pursuing a graduate degree.

Fuller has a 3.99 grade point average and earned bachelor’s degrees in real estate and finance. He plans to pursue a career in commercial real estate and an MBA.

This year’s class of graduates includes 13 newly commissioned Navy and Marine officers.

There are also nine graduates from the McNair Scholars program that prepares low-income, underrepresented and first-generation college students for master’s and PhD programs.

Twenty-seven students have been chosen for Teach for America, the Peace Corps and the Jesuit Volunteer Corps.

Companies that have hired this year’s graduates include Sempra Energy, Thermo Fisher Scientific, Agile Sourcing Partners and Paystik.

This year’s commencement speakers include two USD alumni. Former Nevada Congresswoman Shelley Berkley ’79 (JD) was the speaker for the Law School.

David Rivera ’96, founder of the Nativity Prep Academy, a tuition-free school in southeast San Diego, and the Epiphany Education Foundation to help open other college prep schools in economically distressed areas, is the speaker for the College of Arts and Sciences.

Christopher A. Crane, president and CEO of Edify, a humanitarian organization to that provides loans to Christian schools educating impoverished children in Africa and Latin America, is the speaker for the graduate school commencement.

R. Todd Johnson, a partner with Jones Day who heads the law firm’s Renewable Energy and Sustainability Practice, is the speaker for the Undergraduate School of Business Administration and Shiley-Marcos School of Engineering.

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