CEDARVILLE — The pomp and circumstance that one would expect at a college graduation were on display Saturday, May 6, when Cedarville University graduated 965 students — its largest class by 6 percent — during the 127th annual commencement ceremony in the Doden Field House. The university graduated 909 students in 2022.
This year’s class of graduates included 823 undergraduates and 123 earning a master’s or doctoral degree. Of the graduate students, 22 received their master of divinity (M.Div.) degree, which is the largest group of M.Div. graduates at Cedarville.
Like in 2022, Cedarville held two ceremonies.
“It is so humbling to see the growth of our students during their 1,000 days at Cedarville University and to know they are leaving Cedarville to go into the world to make a difference for the Gospel,” said President Dr. Thomas White.
The morning commencement included students in allied health, education, engineering and computer science, nursing, psychology, science and mathematics, and social work.
“Commencement is the culmination of years of investment and preparation for whatever profession a student may be entering,” said Fran Campbell, registrar at Cedarville University. “It’s one of the most exciting events at Cedarville as we have the opportunity to celebrate each student and their academic accomplishment.”
For the class of 2023, there were four recipients — two awarded at each ceremony — who were presented with the President’s Trophy.
In the morning ceremony, the first recipient of the award, given to a graduating senior who excelled in academics, leadership, service, and Christian character, was Tevia Carr, a resident of Cedarville, who was raised in Japan as the daughter of missionaries.
During her time at Cedarville, Carr was involved in discipleship groups and global outreach trips to Guatemala and Boston, served as a resident assistant for two years, and worked with the academic enrichment center’s WAVE program for incoming freshmen. In the community, she has worked for years with the Mad River Township EMS Squad as an EMT, served as a small group leader at Grace Baptist Church in Cedarville, and volunteered at the Safe Harbor house for women in Springfield.
Carr’s academic advisor, Dr. Heather Kuruvilla, senior professor of biology, said her humility and commitment to serving others set her apart from other students.
“Tevia is an academically gifted student with an excellent work ethic,” said Kuruvilla. “She loves to learn, and always wants to take more classes than we can possibly fit into her schedule, and one of her most outstanding character traits is humility. She excels at putting others above herself.”
The second President’s Trophy recipient was William Imfeld of Danville, Kentucky. Imfeld earned a degree in allied health with a minor in Bible and psychology.
Along with his excellent academic accomplishments, Imfeld participated in King’s Kids Refugee Ministry in Dayton, a global outreach trip to Boston, and volunteered with Florida hurricane cleanup over fall break 2022. He is also involved with the Alpha Chi men’s organization, the allied health organization, the student diversity council, and he was a resident assistant and assistant resident director.
“What a blessing it has been to get to know William during his time at Cedarville. He is thoughtful, intentional, and relational and has a deep desire to invest in others,” said Dr. Elizabeth Sled, associate professor of kinesiology. “I have been greatly encouraged and challenged through my conversations with him and by his example of humility and servant leadership.”
Two other graduates were honored at the second ceremony that awarded degrees to students in business, art, design, theatre, biblical and theological studies, communication, English, literature, modern languages, history, government, interdisciplinary studies, music, worship, and pharmacy.
Mallory Delamarter of Danville, Indiana, was presented with one trophy. She earned a degree in accounting, with minors in Bible and business analytics.
During her time at Cedarville, Delamarter participated on the women’s volleyball team for four years, while also serving on the student-athlete advisory council for two years.
Delamarter’s academic advisor, Dr. Paul Schloemer, professor of accounting, said Delamarter’s work ethic was unparalleled within the student body.
“Mallory gave her best effort in every class — to her, every class was important,” said Schloemer. “She excelled through her attention to detail and her diligent work ethic. Mallory is the model of consistency. For four years, she successfully managed the challenge of being a student-athlete, applying the same work ethic in her sport as she did in the classroom. She is a leader in the classroom and on the court.”
The final President’s Trophy recipient was Isaac Shaw, who received his master of divinity degree with a specialization in biblical care and counseling and a concurrent undergraduate degree in biblical studies with a minor in business administration.
Along with academics, Shaw participated in global outreach trips to New York City, Washington, D.C., and Boston and served in discipleship ministries and as a community life coordinator in Lawlor Hall. He also worked at Rinnova, the campus coffee shop, for three and a half years — two and a half years as a manager.
“Isaac has been a model ministry student,” said Dr. Billy Marsh, associate professor of theological studies, and director of the Master of Divinity program. “From day one as a freshman in Bible and the Gospel to the end of his BA/MDiv program five years later, he has been a humble and teachable learner who is driven by a sincere love for the Lord and a compassionate burden for the lost and Christ’s bride, the church.”