The Student Connection

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Thirty-Four International Programs Students Graduate in Lebanon; Dean Tom Mackey Addresses the Graduates

By Al Lawrence, interim associate dean and area coordinator for criminal justice, Center for Distance Learning

December 11, 2012

International Programs eventThirty-four students in the International Programs' Lebanon location graduated July 18 in Beirut during the 11th commencement of the Empire State College partner institution, American University of Science and Technology. (Photo at left: CDL Dean Tom Mackey, center, with graduates)

Center for Distance Learning Dean Thomas P. Mackey travelled to Lebanon to address the graduates. "This collaboration between our two institutions demonstrates the power of working together to provide educational opportunities for our students, to bridge distances and to change the world," Mackey told the 28 Empire State College graduates present, who were among approximately 700 AUST students at the ceremony. "You have been exposed to new people, new cultures and new experiences. You have learned to solve problems together and to engage with new technologies and new ideas. Today's world is all about making connections in a networked social media environment, and you have been successful in working with these resources to build partnerships and to study in a range of media formats. Higher education is empowering and transformative, and your presence here today demonstrates how successful you have been in participating in this process with your peers, mentors and faculty."

Mackey appeared on the dais with Gen. AbdulRahman Chhaitly of the Lebanese Army and several government ministers, members of the Lebanese Parliament and other dignitaries.