Approximately 600 undergraduate, graduate and law students celebrated their graduation at Hofstra’s midyear commencement ceremony. Check out photos, as well as a video (in English and Chinese), of the ceremony.
Will Allen, founder and CEO of Growing Power Inc., will be the guest speaker and receive an honorary doctor of humane letters degree from Hofstra. Also receiving an honorary doctorate at the ceremony is State Assemblyman Harvey Weisenberg. The ceremony was held Sunday, Dec. 21 at the David S. Mack Sports and Exhibition Complex on the North Campus.
Meet the commencement honorees:
Will Allen, a recipient of the MacArthur “Genius Grant,” is an urban farmer who is transforming the cultivation, production and delivery of healthy foods to under-served urban populations. After a brief stint playing professional basketball, he and his family settled in a suburb outside Milwaukee, where he turned his sights to farming and the production and delivery of fresh and healthy foods to underserved, urban populations. In 1995 he founded Growing Power Inc., a not-for-profit center for urban agriculture training and building community food security systems. Through Growing Power and community food projects across the United States and throughout the world, Allen promotes the belief that all people, regardless of their economic circumstances, should have access to fresh, safe, affordable and nutritious foods. In February 2010, Allen was one of four national spokesmen who stood with First Lady Michelle Obama at the White House to launch her “Let’s Move!” initiative to reverse the epidemic of childhood obesity by 2015. In May 2010 Time magazine named him one of the “100 World’s Most Influential People.”
Also receiving an honorary doctorate at the ceremony is Hofstra alumnus Assemblyman Harvey Weisenberg (MSEd ’60). He has served on the assembly since 1989. In 1999 he was appointed chairman of the Committee on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse, and in 2003, was appointed assistant speaker pro tempore. As a state legislator, Weisenberg has had many successes, especially in the area of fighting for the needs of individuals with disabilities. He spearheaded a landmark victory in gaining a restoration of $90 million to the New York State Office for People with Developmental Disabilities, and recently secured a cost-of-living salary increase for direct caregivers who work with some of New York’s most vulnerable citizens. During his 25-year career, Assemblyman Weisenberg authored and gained enactment of more than 300 bills.