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CSE Commemorates 120th Anniversary at Academic Convocation

CSE Commemorates 120th Anniversary at Academic Convocation

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Morristown, N.J. (August 20, 2019) – "Opening convocation is a traditional event on college campuses throughout the United States," explained Gregory Beaubrun, '20, student speaker for the 2019-2020 Academic Convocation. "It's a means to call everyone together to start the new year."

Dressed in their caps and gowns, the class of 2020 streamed into Dolan Performance Hall on August 19, 2019. The freshmen class watched excitedly from the balcony above, witnessing the future product of their burgeoning educational journeys.

"This is an incredibly special day, not just because we are celebrating the first fully coeducational class poised to graduate from the College, but because we are welcoming a new freshmen class on the occasion of our 120th anniversary," said Dr. Helen J. Streubert, president of the College.

In 1899, six women stepped off the train at Convent Station and became the first class in the history of the College of Saint Elizabeth. These women had no idea the legacy of leadership, integrity, social responsibility and excellence in learning they'd inspire in future generations. In fact, Detective Diane DaSilva, '11/16, speaking twelve decades later, echoed their pioneering spirit in her keynote address.

Born the daughter of an undocumented construction worker with a high school education and an undocumented factory worker with a third-grade education, DaSilva overcame many hurdles to achieve success.

"I had a quote by Jerry Corstens hanging on my wall that said, 'outgrow what you were born into, don't let the limitations of your background reduce the height of your potential,'" recalled DaSilva, who has a prestigious career in law enforcement. "No one can take away your inner fortitude. My sister and I were the first in our family to earn college degrees and post-graduate degrees."

The ceremony concluded with students who made the Dean's List during the 2018-2019 academic year being awarded with honor cords to be worn at graduation. The Academic Convocation ended with reciting the CSE student oath and singing the Alma Mater.

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