Gov. Ralph Northam, the 73rd governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia, will address Longwood University graduates as the 2018 commencement speaker. The undergraduate ceremony will take place at 9:30 a.m. Saturday, May 19, on Wheeler Mall.
Joan Perry Brock ’64, an acclaimed philanthropic and business leader and dedicated Longwood supporter, will give the commencement address at the graduate ceremony on Friday, May 18.
Governor Northam embodies the ideals of citizen leadership Longwood strives to instill in our students.Longwood President W. Taylor Reveley IV. Tweet This
“We are very proud to welcome Governor Northam, in his first year as governor, to deliver an inspirational charge to the graduates of Virginia’s third-oldest public university,” said Longwood President W. Taylor Reveley IV. “As someone who appreciates that our commonwealth was founded on public service and has called for bipartisan problem solving in the Virginia way, Governor Northam embodies the ideals of citizen leadership Longwood strives to instill in our students. He also understands that the unique heritage of places like Farmville—a true crossroads of history—endows us with a responsibility to shape the future and to leave our communities better than we found them.”
A native of Virginia’s Eastern Shore, Northam previously served as an Army doctor, pediatric neurologist, business owner, member of the Virginia Senate and lieutenant governor. He is a graduate of Virginia Military Institute and Eastern Virginia Medical School.
Longwood’s commencement speakers over the past five years have included Washington Post chief political correspondent Dan Balz, Pulitzer Prize-winning presidential historian Doris Kearns Goodwin and Virginia Sen. Mark Warner, who delivered the 2014 address.
Joan Brock is the epitome of a citizen leader, and will have great wisdom from her experiences in business and life to share as the final lesson for our graduate students.Longwood President W. Taylor Reveley IV. Tweet This
The university’s graduate commencement will be held on Friday, May 18, at 5:30 p.m. in Jarman Hall Auditorium. In 2016, Brock, along with her late husband, Macon, made the largest gift in Longwood history: $5.9 million to create the Brock Endowment for Transformational Learning. The Brock Experiences are a growing group of immersive, citizenship-focused courses taught at sites around the United States, including in Alaska, Arizona, Yellowstone National Park and the Chesapeake Bay.
“Joan Brock is the epitome of a citizen leader, and will have great wisdom from her experiences in business and life to share as the final lesson for our graduate students before we welcome them to the ranks of Longwood alumni,” Reveley said.
Longwood is expected to confer more than 990 undergraduate degrees, more than 170 graduate degrees and 24 graduate professional endorsements for the 2017-18 academic year. More information about graduation weekend can be found on Longwood’s commencement website: http://www.longwood.edu/commencement/.