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UNC 2021 Fall Commencement Ceremonies, Dec. 10-11

December 3, 2021

The University of Northern Colorado held its fall commencement ceremonies on Friday, Dec. 10, and Saturday, Dec. 11. Approximately 914 students graduated this fall with around 566 earning a bachelor's degree and around 348 earning a master's, specialist or doctoral degree. 

Doctoral Ceremony 

The Graduate School hosted a ceremony for doctoral candidates, 7 p.m., Friday, Dec. 10, in the Campus Commons Performance Hall.

Watch the video of the 2021 fall doctoral ceremony on Dec. 10:

Bachelor’s, Master’s and Specialist's Ceremonies

UNC hosted three ceremonies for bachelor's, master's and specialist's candidates on Saturday, Dec. 11 in the Bank of Colorado Arena at the following times:

  • 9 a.m. — College of Education and Behavioral Sciences
  • 12:30 p.m. — College of Natural and Health Sciences and College of Performing and Visual Arts
  • 3 p.m. — College of Humanities and Social Sciences and Kenneth W. Monfort College of Business 

Watch the video of the 9 a.m. 2021 College of Education and Behavioral Sciences ceremony on Dec. 11:

Watch the video of the 12:30 p.m. 2021 College of Natural and Health Sciences and College of Performing and Visual Arts ceremony on Dec. 11:

Watch the video of the 3 p.m.  2021 College of Humanities and Social Sciences and Kenneth W. Monfort College of Business ceremony on Dec. 11:

Speakers

College of Education and Behavioral Sciences

Graduate student speaker: Shelby Clark, Master of Arts, School Counseling

Shelby Clark

Over the last eight years, Shelby has been a middle school English teacher in north Aurora. Her passion and love for equity and teaching led her to pursue her master’s degree in School Counseling through UNC's Extended Campus program. Her hope is to better serve the students she loves as whole individuals through her role as a counselor. Shelby is also proud to be a mom to her two-year-old son, Harrison.

Undergraduate student speaker: Sedric Allan Miller, Bachelor of Arts, Elementary Education

Sedric Allan Miller

Miller is a Colorado native and has been described as a kind, charismatic and intelligent individual who has the ability to connect with anyone he encounters. In his leisure time, he enjoys snowboarding, motorcycle riding, traveling, and creative arts. Miller’s strong desire to see the world change was a major motivating factor in his decision to attend UNC's Center for Urban Education. Currently, Miller is sculpting future minds at a K-8 dual language immersion school in Aurora as a Technology instructor. 


College of Natural and Health Sciences and College of Performing and Visual Arts 

Graduate student speaker: Salaheddin Sharif, Doctor of Philosophy, Sport and Exercise Science: Exercise Physiology

Sharif

Salaheddin Sharif is originally from North Africa, mainly Libya. He holds a Bachelor of Medicine (M.B.CH. B), equivalent to an MD in the U.S., from Arab Medical University, Benghazi, Libya, and a Master of Science in Exercise Physiology from West Virginia University. Sharif's research explores Doxorubicin-induced cardiotoxicity and myotoxicity mechanisms and how exercise and nutritional interventions alleviate Doxorubicin-induced toxicity. Sharif has recently accepted a research fellow position at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, where he will work at the Endocrine Research Unit to study the effect of exercise on insulin resistance in type 2 diabetes. 

Undergraduate student student speaker: Kayley Louise Hill, Bachelor of Arts, Theatre Arts

Kayley Hill

Kayley Hill is a first-generation college student graduating with honors. She is receiving her Bachelor of Arts in Theatre Arts with a minor in Business Administration and an Arts Entrepreneurship certificate. During her time at UNC, she worked as a student ambassador, ticket agent and teacher's assistant. Kayley plans to intern at a local professional theatre company in the spring to gain more knowledge in the world of arts administration. 


College of Humanities and Social Sciences and the Kenneth W. Monfort College of Business 

Graduate student speaker: Esthela Nunez Schnee, Master of Business Administration, Business Administration: Human Resource Management

Nunez-Schnee

At the age of 10, Esthela Nunez Schnee, who uses the pen name Esthela Nunez Franco,immigrated from Mexico with her parents. She’s always had a passion for helping others; as a working professional by trade and an artist by birth. With an endless love of books, Nunez Schnee learned to embrace life simply by being human, opening the floodgates to a lifelong dedication of extroverted personal expression through writing, painting and photography. Nunez Schnee is the author of children’s books BreezyGirl, Breezy & Esthela with Friends: Coloring & Activity Book, A Day with Mom, Grandpa is Happy, and coming soon, My Uncle is Sick. She also wrote her memoir in 2021 and debuted as a nonfiction contributing author in A Path to Purpose: Seven Inspired Stories to Find Your True North. Nunez Schnee believes everyone has a story - some are just courageous enough to share it. 

Undergraduate student speaker: Jorge Cabral Pasillas, Bachelor of Arts, History

Pasillas

Jorge Cabral Pasillas is graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in History with a Secondary Education Licensure. As a first-generation Mexican American and the oldest grandchild in his family, Jorge felt inspired and motivated to become the first to graduate college and set an example for the rest of the family to pursue higher education. Raised in Colorado, Cabral Pasillas loves to go on hikes, hangout in mountain towns and walk around downtown Denver. He is the president of the UNC Club Soccer team and is part of the Center for Human Enrichment and a participant in the Cumbres program. 

More Info on Ceremonies

  • UNC is currently requiring masks covering the nose and mouth in public indoor spaces. This applies to all individuals regardless of vaccination status and is a temporary precaution during the Delta variant surge.
  • Parking is free in UNC lots. 
  • Tickets aren't required to attend the ceremonies and seating is available on a first-come basis. 
  • Doors to the venues open one hour before each ceremony. 
  • All ceremonies will be broadcast live on the UNC Commencement homepage at unco.edu/commencement

About UNC's Fall 2021 Graduating Class:

  • No. of students graduating: 914
  • No. of students earning a bachelor's degree: 566
    • No. who are first generation: 256 (45%)
  • No. of students earning graduate degrees: 348 (300 master's, 31 doctorates, 17 specialists)

  • Age range:
    • Undergraduate: 20-59
    • Graduate: 22-70

  • Average GPA
    • Undergraduate: 3.34
    • Graduate: 3.84

  • Most popular majors (by degree awarded):
    • Undergraduate: Nursing, Business Administration, Elementary Education, Psychology, Biological Sciences, Criminology and Criminal Justice 
    • Graduate: Special Education, Business Administration, Educational Psychology, Clinical and Mental Health Counseling, Sport and Exercise Science, Teaching American Sign Language

  • International countries represented: 4 (China, India, Libya Jamahiriya and Mexico)

  • States represented: 45 (Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming)

  • Colorado counties represented: 38 (Adams, Alamosa, Arapahoe, Boulder, Broomfield, Denver, Douglas, Eagle, El Paso, Elbert, Fremont, Garfield, Grand, Gunnison, Jefferson, La Plata, Lake, Larimer, Las Animas, Logan, Mesa, Montezuma, Montrose, Morgan, Otero, Park, Phillips, Pitkin, Prowers, Pueblo, Rio Blanco, Rio Grande, Routt, Sedgwick, Summit, Teller, Weld and Yuma)

Meet Some of Our 2021 Fall Graduates

Tentative as of Dec. 8, 2021. Degrees conferred for fall 2021 in January 2022.

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