One hundred and nineteen St. John’s College seniors, having completed their senior essays and defended them in oral examinations, are expected to receive their diplomas at the college’s 220th commencement ceremony on the college’s front lawn on Sunday, May 13 at 10:30 a.m. Twenty-four students in the Annapolis Graduate Institute will receive their master’s degrees. At St. John’s, the senior class selects the commencement speaker. This year, noted author Salvatore Scibona, St. John’s College, Santa Fe class of 1997, will deliver the commencement address.
Scibona’s first novel, “The End,” was a finalist for the 2008 National Book Award and winner of the Young Lions Fiction Award from the New York Public Library and the Norman Mailer Cape Cod Award for Exceptional Writing. He received a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2010 and a Fulbright Fellowship in 2000. His short fiction has won a Pushcart Prize and an O. Henry Award, and has appeared in the New York Times, the New Yorker, the Threepenny Review, and other publications. He was named one of the New Yorker’s “20 Under 40” writers to watch in 2010. Scibona administers the writing fellowship at the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Mass.
The college’s commencement ceremonies are simple, but rich with tradition. The ceremony opens with a procession of faculty and students on the tree-lined front lawn. A handful of prizes and honorable mentions are awarded before each student is given a diploma and congratulated by St. John’s President Christopher B. Nelson.
The graduating seniors represent 34 states and the District of Columbia, Nepal, Georgia, South Korea, China, Vietnam, Canada, Montenegro, and France. The master’s candidates represent 13 states and Belgium. Seventeen of this year’s graduating seniors and seven of the master’s candidates are Maryland residents. The graduating seniors from Maryland include: Justin Andrew Leishman, Jay Wesley Rohrer, both of Annapolis; Elizabeth Grace Natterman, Rhianna Kristine Toner, both of Baltimore; Matthew James McMullen, of Bowie; James Michael Flaim, of Chesapeake Beach; Grant Aaron Kuning, of Columbia; Nicholas Dante Bender, of Edgewater; Anthony Augustino Pecoraro, William Austin Pecoraro, both of Ellicott City; John Stewart Fleming, of Gaithersburg; Russel Allen Provost, of Hyattsville; Amanda Marie Griggs, of Odenton; Shannon Gervois Vaughn, of Oxford; Alexander Ivanovich Bobrow, Galen Vittorio Mancino, both of Silver Spring; and Carol Renee Partonen, of Waldorf.
The graduating master’s candidates from Maryland are: Kristin Erica Godwin, of Annapolis; Luke Phillips Dougherty, of Baltimore; Wesley John Schantz, of Gaithersburg; Victoria Alexandra Wiley, of Phoenix; Christine Marie Ivory, of Poolesville; Howard Blair Andrews, of Severn; and Krista Marie Ehasz, of Shady Side.
In case of rain, commencement exercises will take place in Francis Scott Key Auditorium. From 10:15 a.m. to noon, College Avenue will be closed to traffic from St. John’s Street to King George Street; the first block of Prince George Street will be closed as well.
For more information: www.stjohnscollege.edu/events