2016 Commencement Speakers and Honorary Degree Information

Commencement is a season of great happiness and celebration that marks the culmination of our communal efforts with the fulfillment of hopes and dreams for so many students, their families and friends. It's a time to showcase the accomplishments and triumphs of graduate and undergraduate students as they transition to careers, further educational opportunities, successful lives, and lifelong membership in the Merrimack alumni community.

Spurring the graduates along will be thought-provoking speakers who drive national conversations, each in their own ways, about the importance of public service.
Humanitarian and Global Health Corps co-founder Barbara Pierce Bush will address the graduate school commencement Friday evening, May 20. Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker will address Merrimack College’s 66th undergraduate commencement Sunday morning, May 22.
Baker is Massachusetts’ 72nd governor, elected in 2014. He formerly served as CEO of Harvard Pilgrim Health Care and as the commonwealth’s secretary of administration and finance, as well as secretary of health and human services.
Bush is the daughter and granddaughter of U.S. presidents; founded Global Health Corps, a non-profit corporation that places young professionals in year-long fellowships serving poor communities in Africa and the United States.
Merrimack is also presenting honorary doctorates to Robert Pinsky, graduate writing professor at Boston University and former poet laureate of the United States; F. Ken Duane ’80, CEO of Heritage and North American, Phillips Van Heusen, successful business leader; engaged alumnus and Merrimack sponsor, former member of the Board of Trustess; Francis E. Girard ’62, former vice chairman and CEO of Comverse Network Systems (CNS), generous benefactor to the college for whom Merrimack’s Girard School of Business is named; Joshua L. Miner IV, managing trustee of the Nathaniel & Elizabeth P. Stevens Foundation and Abbott and Dorothy H. Stevens Foundation, for which the Stevens Learning Center at Merrimack College is named.
Learn more about these visionaries and leaders at