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NDSU announces spring commencement

NDSU spring commencement is scheduled for Saturday, May 11, at 10 a.m. at the Fargodome.

As of April 26, a total of 1,188 students indicated they intend to participate in commencement. Of those, 988 are undergraduate and 200 are graduate students, said Associate Registrar Rhonda Kitch. A total of 1,903 undergraduates and 309 graduate students are eligible to participate.

The commencement ceremony is open to the public. Parking is free at the Fargodome. Doors will open one hour before the ceremony begins, and guests may enter through any general entrance. All seating is on the concourse level on a first-come, first-served basis.

Commencement speaker
Kylie Artz, a microbiology major, is the student commencement speaker. The Bottineau, N.D., native is an active student at NDSU, serving as president of Blue Key Honor Society and as an NDSU Ag Ambassador representing the College of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Natural Resources. She also stays busy through her role as a campus tour guide, involvement with the national service organization Students Today Leaders Forever, and an impressive list of volunteer activities.

Academically, Artz is a Presidential Scholar and regularly appears on the dean’s list. “Kylie is an exceptional young person who has successfully demonstrated what it is to be a well-rounded student who can balance the rigors of class with campus activities and community involvement,” said Patti Sebesta, Ag Ambassador adviser and director of college advancement for the College of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Natural Resources.

Commencement soloist
Tyler Raad, a native of Spearfish, S.D, is this year’s student soloist. He will graduate with a Master of Music in vocal performance. An award-winning tenor, Raad has won first place in the National Association of Teachers of Singing competition in both South Dakota and North Dakota.

Raad earned his bachelor degrees in music and theatre performance from Black Hills State University. He earned a graduate assistantship at NDSU, where he has studied under the guidance of Robert Jones, professor of voice. During his graduate work at NDSU, Raad was in several ensembles such as the NDSU Concert Choir and Madrigal Singers, as well as several NDSU productions. Raad is the founder and president of the Fargo Camerata, a student organization dedicated to bringing opera experiences to students and the community.

Doctoral degree conferral anniversary celebration 
This year marks the 50th anniversary of NDSU conferring doctoral degrees. In 1963, five graduate students – Taki John Anagnostou, chemistry; Lola V. Hopkins, pharmacy; Frank E. LeGrand, agronomy; Jerome A. Onsager, entomology; and Sol Shulman, paint chemistry – became the first students to earn doctoral degrees from the university.

At that time, five doctorate programs were offered. Today, the university offers 50 doctoral degree programs, 86 master’s degree programs and 12 certificate programs.

Of that inaugural group, LeGrand, a retired Oklahoma State University professor, is the only living member. He will be recognized at commencement.

LeGrand lives in Stillwater, Okla., where he farms and ranches 1,000 acres. He and his wife of 63 years, Alberta, have five children (their fifth child was born in Fargo while LeGrand was pursuing his doctorate) and three grandchildren.

Watch commencement online
Commencement will be streamed live and will be archived for 60 days following the ceremony. Additional information can be found at

Visit for more information.

NDSU is recognized as one of the nation's top 108 public and private universities by the Carnegie Commission on Higher Education.

Student Focused. Land Grant. Research University.

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Vice President for University Relations
North Dakota State University
Phone: +1 (701) 231-1068 - Fax: (701) 231-1989
Campus address: Old Main 204
Mailing address: Dept 6000 PO Box 6050, Fargo, ND 58108-6050
Page manager: NDSU University Relations