This last month has been full of pomp, circumstance and purpose at Virginia Wesleyan. First, I offer my heartfelt congratulations to the Class of 2022. We celebrated these graduates on Saturday, May 14, and Commencement Weekend events also included our Baccalaureate Service and the Batten Honors College Capstone Ceremony. Once again, we offer our special thanks to our Commencement speaker, S. Bernard Goodwyn, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Virginia, for his inspiring address.
In the days following Commencement, we hosted the spring meeting of the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV), which included the annual Private College Advisory Board meeting. The two-day event included a reception and dinner where we hosted special guests Aimee Guidera, Virginia’s Secretary of Education; Robert Lambeth, President of the Council of Independent Colleges in Virginia; and Delegate Cliff Hayes, 77th district, among many others.
Last month, we dedicated DeFord Manor, the on-campus president's residence, with a ribbon cutting and dinner that included a special presentation of gratitude to the home's namesakes, Trustees and benefactors Bob and Nancy DeFord. We celebrated our nine retiring employees who collectively have 232 years of experience at Virginia Wesleyan, and we announced our newest members of the Batten Honors College.
Our students won a variety of national accolades in extracurricular activities, including first place in the undergraduate division of the Intentional Endowments Network "Student Corporate Engagement Competition" and 20 awards in the annual Society for Collegiate Journalists National Contest. In athletics, Geni Roberts of the VWU Track & Field team claimed his second National Runner Up finish this year; this time in the men's triple jump at the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championship Meet in Geneva, OH. VWU softball won the NCAA Regionals and picked up its sixth consecutive Old Dominion Athletic Conference title along the way.
Congratulations to all, especially to the resilient Class of 2022! We wish them the very best as they pursue meaningful personal and professional goals in their lives.