• After attending classes, completing projects, and writing papers, graduating students gather at Worthen Arena to celebrate.
  • Shonte Drakeford overcame many challenges to earn her master’s degree to become a nurse practitioner. The Washington D.C. resident has persevered through cancer to accomplish her goal.
  • Vanessa Convard of Indianapolis has just received a master of arts degree in adult and community education.
  • Larry Gerstein, the George and Frances Ball Distinguished Professor of Psychology-Counseling and director of the Center for Peace and Conflict Studies, focuses on how to resolve conflicts during his keynote address, “An Unlikely Outcome and Lessons Along the Way.”
  • Graduates beamed with pride as they collected their diplomas.
  • Ball State President Geoffrey S. Mearns congratulates graduates on their successes and encourages them to continue serving their neighbors.
  • Karlee Guerrettaz has her hands full of flowers and her decorative mortarboard after the ceremony. Her family came from Indianapolis, Bloomington, and Evansville to celebrate with her.

Hundreds of family members and friends gathered in Worthen Arena on Saturday, July 22, to celebrate Summer Commencement for more than 1,100 graduating Ball State University students.

During the ceremony, Ball State President Geoffrey S. Mearns urged graduates to recognize and thank the faculty, staff, family, and friends who helped them. Mearns encouraged graduates to lead meaningful lives, by being sincere, speaking the truth, modeling integrity, and valuing integrity in others.

“Never forget the dream that brings you here today," Mearns said. "Pursue that dream with passion and with courage. And pursue that dream with great optimism. Because we believe in a better future, a world that is more peaceful and more just. We believe in that bright future because we believe in you.”

View the photo gallery above to see more highlights from the day, or watch a replay of the ceremony.