Graduates Encouraged to Put On Their "Game Face"

by Public Relations Office—Cedarville, Ohio

Cedarville, Ohio—Kay Coles James, founder and president of The Gloucester Institute, reminded the graduates at Cedarville University’s 112th commencement ceremony that a complex and dangerous world awaits them.

    James told the University’s graduating class, “when you take your robes off today be prepared to put on your game face.” She challenged the class to become students of culture able to defend positions based on biblical principles. Referencing Ephesians 6:10 James concluded, “Be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power. Put on the full armor of God.”

    James has experience and accomplishments in every sector of America’s economy. She has served dozens of for-profit and not-for-profit organizations, as well as in academia and government. She has managed a small office of five, and the largest workforce in the world as President George W. Bush's Director of the U.S. Office of Personnel Management overseeing 1.8 million members of the Federal civil service.

    In 2004, James founded The Gloucester Institute an organization dedicated to identifying, training and nurturing African American leaders. The Gloucester Institute is committed to providing an intellectually safe environment where ideas can be discussed and transformed into practical solutions that produce results.

    The Class of 2008 presented a financial donation in honor of classmate Dan Knudsen who suffered a paralyzing spinal cord injury during an international missions trip. Their class gift to the University will be used to reconfigure a portion of a men’s residence hall. The end goal is to provide an on-campus housing option for a male student needing advanced physical care.

    Also during commencement, three graduates were honored with the University’s most prestigious student award. The President’s Trophy, the highest honor for a graduating senior, recognizes leadership, ministry, community and campus involvement, athletic performance, and academic achievement. The 2008 recipients were Micah Martin, music performance major from Morning Sun, Iowa; Kristie Febo, Spanish major from Coventry, R.I.; and BingJia Grace Zhang, psychology major from South Charleston, Ohio.

    The Faculty Scholarship Award was presented to six students for maintaining perfect 4.0 grade point averages throughout their college careers. The recipients were Joshua D. Garling, computer science major from Westerville, Ohio; Kevin Thomas Gulley, biology major from Wheelersburg, Ohio; Brett William Smith, philosophy major from New London, Ohio; Megan Scott Waters, international studies major from New Albany, Ind.; Jacob Michael Kern, comprehensive Bible major from Wooster, Ohio; and Laura Anne Ziegenfus, Spanish education major from Binghamton, N.Y.