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Convocation 2005
Photos © Nathan Mandell

Kellogg bestows more than 1,400 MBA degrees in 2005
Convocations accent global leadership role for graduates

  Online Videos
  2005 Commencement Speeches 
  Jim Scherr ’89
Keynote Speaker
online video
  Dean Dipak Jain
online video
  These videos require RealPlayer

Inside Northwestern University's Welsh-Ryan Arena, flags representing all 11 Big Ten schools hang from the rafters. On June 18, a banner from the Kellogg School of Management also flew, in honor of its convocation ceremony that brought together some 7,000 people to celebrate the academic accomplishments of the 909 full- and part-time MBA graduates who walked across the stage to receive diplomas. In all, Kellogg conferred 1,410 degrees upon the Class of 2005 across all programs - including 178 graduates of the Executive MBA program that held its convocation a week earlier.

The afternoon ceremony began with rousing comments from Northwestern President Henry Bienen. "It's wonderful to be the president of a university that boasts the best business school in the world," he said. In their remarks, convocation speaker Jim Scherr '89, CEO of the U.S. Olympic Committee (see p.8), and Kellogg Dean Dipak C. Jain reminded the new alumni of the global leadership roles that they must be willing to accept.

Convocation 2005  

Dean Jain's lessons drew mainly upon his experience as a survivor of the tsunami that struck Thailand in December. He told the story of animals who ran to safety after sensing the earthquake that precipitated the disaster. "In a time of crisis, the people who make the right decisions are the ones who keep their feet on the ground, or keep in touch with reality." As future leaders and ambassadors of the Kellogg School, said Jain, the graduates' reality must include responsibilities beyond economic fulfillment: "We are all here to make this world a better and a safer place to live."

Mr. Scherr, who was named CEO of the USOC in April, returned to Welsh-Ryan as a speaker more than 20 years after wrestling there as a student. The former NCAA champion and Olympian challenged the graduates "to dream a vision, to pursue that vision to the best of your ability, and through that journey make a difference." Much as Olympic athletes connect others to their dreams and change their communities as a result of their exposure, said Scherr, Kellogg graduates must take advantage of the platform provided to them as leaders to improve others' lives.

Members of the Kellogg School's EMBA program also graduated, a week earlier, in the Pick-Staiger Concert Hall on the Evanston campus. The keynote address was delivered by Etienne J. Veber '88, who until most recently was CEO and president of Merisant Worldwide Inc., a global leader of branded zero-calorie sweeteners. Mr. Veber continues to sit on the Merisant board of directors. His talk focused on the importance of today's business leaders having a global focus and the ability to adjust to change.

Amy M. Schuman gave the student address for EMP-59, while Donald L. Hammond enjoyed that honors for EMP-60. Graduates also heard comments from Dean Jain and Assistant Dean and EMBA Director Julie Cisek Jones. EMP-59 selected professors Sunil Chopra and Richard Honack as "Outstanding Professors," and EMP-60 selected professors Artur Raviv and Sergio Rebelo.

Joining the EMBA graduates at their convocation were 15 graduates from the Kellogg School's joint IEMBA program at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. These students graduated with their colleagues in Hong Kong in April but also chose to be recognized at the Kellogg convocation since they have joint degrees.

Following the convocation, all graduates, along with families and friends, were hosted at a reception at the James L. Allen Center.


©2002 Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University