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Commencement Ceremonies
May 10-11, 2024 

Graduate Commencement

Friday, May 10, at 7 p.m.

Undergraduate Commencement

Saturday, May 11, at 11 a.m.

Graduate Speaker Marcus Fuller ’15M, PhD

Dr. Marcus Charles Fuller headshotDr. Marcus Charles Fuller ’15m earned a master’s in special education from Shippensburg University before earning a doctorate in educational psychology. Fuller was an active member of the Shippensburg University campus community as a graduate assistant for the Educational Leadership/Special Education Department, a social justice advocate and a supporter of the Shippensburg Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi, Fraternity Inc. Fuller worked for many years within the preK-12 system in Pennsylvania, Texas, Louisiana, Washington DC, Vermont, and Maryland. He is an assistant professor of special education at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore, a land-grant historically Black university.

His research is focused on disabilities and the importance of diversity in the classroom. His work aims to help practitioners increase their use of culturally and linguistically sustaining pedagogies, the understanding of intersectionality in the classroom, and the creation of a classroom environment that promotes justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion. He is an active member of the Council for Exceptional Children. In his free time, Fuller enjoys running, catching up on his streaming TV shows, and playing with his dog.

Undergraduate Speaker James W. Saxton ’79

James Saxton headshotJames Saxton, Esq., ’79 is the chief executive officer of Saxton & Stump, a full-service law firm serving Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and South Carolina. Saxton's leadership and strategic vision led the firm to a 300 percent growth in revenue and the expansion of the team, services provided, and geographic footprint.

Saxton has over 30 years of healthcare litigation experience and continues to represent hospitals and physicians before state and federal courts in professional liability and complex litigation matters. He is a nationally recognized speaker on healthcare issues, including litigation and trial best practices, mitigation, patient safety, and overviews of changes in the healthcare landscape. He has contributed to the literature by way of hundreds of articles and multiple books on various healthcare topics.

He is an active member of many distinguished professional organizations and has been named to the Best Lawyers in America for the last eight years and to Super Lawyers for the last twelve years. Additionally, he has been chosen as a Fellow of the Litigation Counsel of America, a Fellow of the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, and a board member for SE Healthcare. In 2017, he was certified as a member of Lawyers of Distinction, an honor limited to the top 10 percent of attorneys in the United States.

He is an active member of the community; Saxton has received several honors for his philanthropy including the Excellence in Philanthropy Award presented by the Lancaster General Health Foundation's Board of Trustees. He served as chairman of the Lancaster YMCA Foundation and is a past president of their Board of Directors.

Related Celebrations

Lavender Graduation

Lavender Graduation (or Lav Grad) is an annual ceremony to honor LGBTQ+ students and to acknowledge our achievements and contributions to the University. All students, including cisgender and heterosexual students are welcome to join us in celebrating this milestone. 

May 9, 2024

4-6 p.m.


The keynote speaker will be Lee Blinder, policy chair of the Maryland Commission on LGBTQIA+ Affairs, member of the Maryland Judiciary LGBTQ+ Family Law Workgroup and founding Executive Director of Trans Maryland. Mx. Blinder will be in the PAGE Center before the ceremony to talk about their professional and policy experience with students.

The Lavender Graduation Ceremony was created by Dr. Ronni Sanlo, a Jewish Lesbian, who was denied the opportunity to attend the graduations of her biological children because of her sexual orientation. It was through this experience that she came to understand the pain felt by her students. Encouraged by the Dean of Students at the University of Michigan, Dr. Sanlo designed the first Lavender Graduation Ceremony in 1995. 

Join us each semester as we celebrate our graduates and recognize their achievements.