SSU expects big crowds for 2014 commencement
Wine icon Gary Heck to receive honorary degree
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Sonoma State University will award diplomas to the Class of 2014 at its annual commencement ceremonies on Saturday, May 10. Approximately 2,000 are expected to walk for their diplomas with their families and friends watching. The event historically draws more than 10,000 people to the Commencement Lawn on the Rohnert Park campus. 

The event will be held rain or shine.

Ceremonies are scheduled at 9 a.m. for the School of Science and Technology and the School of Social Sciences and 3 p.m. for the School of Arts and Humanities, School of Business and Economics, and the School of Education.

During and after, the ceremony can be viewed by visiting SSU's streaming media web site at for those who wish to watch it from off-campus or after the ceremonies.

Keynote speaker for both the morning and afternoon ceremony is social entrepreneur Adam Braun founder of Pencils of Promise, which In four short years built close to 200 schools around the world and delivered over 12 million educational hours. He was selected as one of the first ten World Economic Forum Global Shapers and now speaks often on leadership, innovations in education, managing millennials, and the rise of purpose-driven lives and careers

An honorary Doctor of Humane Letters will be presented at the afternoon ceremony to wine industry icon Gary Heck, who is recognized not only for his business success but also for his leadership and integrity. Over the past 18 years, his support and belief in the mission of the University has been pivotal to the success of Sonoma State's Wine Business Institute. Most recently, Heck made a generous $1 million commitment to support the new home of the Wine Business Institute.

Dr. William Silver, Dean of the School of Business and economics says, "Gary has made a tremendous difference, not only in business and industry, but more importantly, in our community. 

His legacy of leadership and generosity has touched and enriched many lives."

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