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American Public University System Recognizes Record 10,000+ Graduates and Outstanding Student and Faculty Accomplishments at 18th Annual Commencement

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va., June 26, 2014American Public University System (APUS), a fully-online institution offering respected, innovative and affordable educational programs to adult learners worldwide, celebrated the academic achievements of a record class of more than 10,000 graduates from American Military University (AMU) and American Public University (APU) at its 18th annual commencement on June 14 at the Gaylord Convention Center in National Harbor, Md.

Class of 2014 Highlights

The Class of 2014 featured more than 3,800 master’s degree conferrals, 5,000 bachelor’s conferrals, and 1,900 associate conferrals, expanding the APUS global alumni network to more than 40,000 worldwide. Dr. Wallace E. Boston, APUS president & CEO, commended the lifelong learning commitment of the graduates, approximately 5,800 of whom serve in the military and the largest number of whom received degrees from the APUS School of Business.

Student and Faculty Recognition

Space Studies graduate Eleanor Morgan and Military History graduate John Persinger received the President’s Award for outstanding graduate and undergraduate academic achievement, respectively. A member of the Golden Key International Honour Society, Morgan received honors for her thesis, “Simulating Long Duration Deep Space Missions.” A 2006 U.S. Air Force Academy graduate, she is a captain in the U.S. Air Force and is currently a pilot and assistant flight commander assigned to Creech Air Force Base. Persinger is a member of Golden Key International Honour Society and the Saber and Scroll Historical Society. He has been in the federal service for over 20 years, four of which were spent on active-duty for the Army.

University Ambassador Thomas Rasbach and APUS Faculty Director Dr. Suzanne Minarcine  received the James P. Etter Award for Creativity and Innovation, while Dr. Fred Stielow, former APUS vice president and dean of libraries, was named dean emeritus. The Etter Award  recognizes outstanding members of the APUS community for their innovative and dedicated work that has served as a catalyst for organizational growth and development as well as an agent for performance improvements.

Rasbach received a bachelor’s in business administration as part of Walmart’s Lifelong Learning Program partnership with APUS.  He has been very active in APUS student organizations, serving in more than one leadership role simultaneously: chapter president of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars, vice president of Delta Mu Delta, and as a university ambassador. Rasbach has also contributed to such university and external publications as Online Learning Tips and EvoLLLution, respectively. He started with Walmart in 1999 as a courtesy associate and worked his way up the ranks of the company, leading him to his current position of Store Planning Field Project Supervisor.

Dr. Minarcine has helped more than 50 students and alumni transfer their business ideas in the classroom to operational successes in the real world. She has also worked to establish a Research Special Interest Group, which facilitates and supports research and scholarly contributions to the greater academic community.

Distinguished Keynote Speakers

Dr. Boston presented former National Security Agency (NSA) leader General (Ret.) Keith Alexander with an honorary doctorate degree following his keynote remarks to the graduate ceremony attendees. Gen. Alexander recently retired from the positions of commander, USCYBERCOM and NSA and as chief, Central Security Service and has been credited with developing and fielding the nation’s first Cyber Command and led the development and implementation of the U.S. Advanced Signals Intelligence Architecture.

Fellow NSA veteran Brig. Gen. (Ret.) John C. (Chris) Inglis addressed the undergraduate ceremony, similarly noting that lifelong learners like AMU and APU students are in the best position to serve our country’s needs now, and into the future. Mr. Inglis retired in January 2014 after more than 41 years of federal service that included 28 years at NSA and more than seven years as its senior civilian and deputy director. He holds the rating of Command Pilot and commanded units at the squadron, group, and joint force headquarters levels before retiring as a brigadier general in 2006.

In related news, APUS staff and faculty also partnered with students and alumni to participate in Stop Hunger Now, packaging more than 15,000 meals to support development programs and save lives in developing countries around the world class.

American Public University System