WOU celebrates largest group of graduates to participate in Commencement ceremony

Dr. Claire Oliveros

Dr. Claire Oliveros, Commencement speaker

On Saturday, June 15, Western Oregon University will celebrate the graduation of 1,370 students (141 more than last year). The expected number of participating graduates in Commencement is the highest in WOU’s history. For the first time, graduates of the Oregon Health & Science University nursing program at WOU will participate in the ceremony, which is a class of 31 graduates. The ceremony will be held at 11 a.m. at McArthur Field.

The event will include remarks from WOU President Mark Weiss, David Yaden of the Oregon State Board of Higher Education and Dr. Claire Oliveros. The student speakers are Trevor Roush (Delmer Dewey Award winner for outstanding graduating senior male), Amanda Litzinger (Julia McCulloch Smith Award winner for outstanding graduating senior female), and Amy Crain (OHSU graduating student).

The 2013 Commencement speaker is Dr. Claire Oliveros, a WOU alumna who graduated from WOU in 1995. She currently serves as the director of the TRiO Students Support Services at Portland Community College Cascade campus. Oliveros comes from a first-generation, low-income family and made it to college with the help of an admissions counselor from WOU. After graduation, she worked as a multicultural admissions counselor for WOU then spent the summer working with the residential summer programs for TRiO Upward Bound. Knowing she wanted to continue working in student development and higher education, she earned a master’s from Portland State University and a doctorate from Oregon State University. She has worked in higher education for the past 17 years.

“My student activities and involvement at Western was the catalyst of where I’m at today. It helped me pursue higher education as a career, and lead me to obtain advanced degrees, which allows me to serve as an administrator and an instructor. It’s been challenging and so rewarding to work in higher education, and I know I wouldn’t be doing it if wasn’t for people at Western who believed in me,” said Oliveros.

As part of each year’s Commencement festivities, a special award is given to a WOU alumnus. This year the Alumni Award of

Cori Frauendiener

Cori Frauendiener, Alumni Award of Excellence winner

Excellence was given to Cori Frauendiener ’67. She works as the director of education partnerships for Maps Credit Union. Through this position she helped develop Maps branches in several high schools, beginning with North Salem High School in 1994. The program offers students a business-based curriculum and focuses on developing students’ real-world employment skills. She is also heavily involved with Western, which began when she joined the Alumni Association Board in the early 1990s and remained on the board for 12 years. Presently she is involved with the WOU Foundation Board.

“Overall, Cori always has WOU on her mind and does her best to promote the school and the opportunities it presents for the young people in our society today. Many of the students she has worked with have attended WOU and have gone on to be successful teachers, business people. It is due to her dedication, passion, and commitment to WOU and the future success of students today that she deserves this prestigious award,” said Michael Feuling, director of alumni relations.

Interesting demographics about WOU’s class of 2013:

  • 82 percent are receiving bachelor’s degrees
  • 18 percent are receiving master’s degrees
  • 36 percent are men, 64 percent are women
  • The youngest bachelor is 20 years old, the oldest bachelor is 70 years old
  • The youngest master is 23 years old, the oldest master is 63 years old
  • The average age for bachelor’s students is 25 years old
  • The average age for master’s students is 33 years old
  • There are six husband and wife graduating teams
  • 22 percent of graduates are married
  • 55 graduates are 2nd-generation WOU graduates
  • One graduate is a 3rd-generation WOU graduate
  • 28 of 36 Oregon counties are represented
  • Ten states are represented: Alaska, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, New York, Oregon, Washington, Wyoming
  • Eight countries are represented: China, Saudi Arabia, Northern Mariana Islands, Guatemala, Mexico, Estonia, Libya and the United States
  • Three students have a 4.00 WOU gpa
  • 13 students have completed two bachelor’s degrees at the same time
  • Four sets of twins are graduating

Interesting demographics about OHSU’s class of 2013:

  • 100 percent are receiving Bachelors of Science with an Emphasis in Nursing
  • 13 percent are men, 87 percent are women
  • The youngest is graduate 21 years old, the oldest is 52 years old
  • The average age for graduates is 30 years old
  • 55 percent are married
  • Nine Oregon counties are represented
  • Four states are represented: Alaska, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington
  • Three countries are represented: Germany, Laos, USA
  • 13 have a 4.00 OHSU cum GPA

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