Campbell confers 526 degrees during winter commencements

BUIES CREEK — Campbell University recognized 488 students with associate’s bachelor’s, master’s, Juris Doctor, and Doctor of Pharmacy degrees earned in August 2014 and December 2014 during the main Winter Commencement ceremony held Saturday, Dec. 13, in the John W. Pope, Jr. Convocation Center.

In a separate commencement Saturday afternoon in Turner Auditorium, Campbell also recognized 38 students who earned their Master of Physician Assistant Practice degrees. They are the second cohort of PA students who have graduated from Campbell.

Dr. Ronald W. Maddox, founding dean of Campbell’s College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences and vice president for health programs, delivered the main commencement address. He encouraged graduates to follow some simple tenets to enhance their future career paths: keep order in their lives, have a positive attitude, a strong work ethic, personal and professional integrity, an eye on the future, a willingness to cooperate and self-confidence.

“Individuals who believe in themselves will inspire and lead others to produce great results,” said Maddox, who is retiring from the position Dec. 31. “Managers with self-confidence bring out the best in others. Our own president had the confidence to envision a medical school at Campbell and, after discussions with key leaders, the result is the Jerry M. Wallace School of Osteopathic Medicine.”

Marc S. Katz, president elect of the N.C. Pharmacy Academy of Physician Assistants, delivered the PA commencement speech. Katz, who has been a practicing physician assistant for more than 35 years, noted that there was no better time for graduates to join one of the foremost careers in the health care arena.

“The Affordable Care Act has brought millions of additional patients into an already burdened system,” Katz said. “I’m confident that PAs can help address the shortage of trained physicians. We are trained as generalists and can adapt to specialties as needed.”

The ceremonies marked the last time that Campbell President Jerry M. Wallace will preside over winter graduation exercises. Wallace has announced plans to retire in June 2015.

Look for more coverage of Saturday’s commencements, including a photo gallery, on on Monday.