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Portland State Celebrates Largest Graduating Class at Spring Commencement, June 17
Author: Erin Malecha Arias (503-725-8794) Office of Marketing and Communications
Posted: June 15, 2006
This Saturday, June 17, Portland State University will graduate its largest class ever.

Portland State will award a total of 4,515 degrees for the 2005–06 academic year, including 3,050 bachelor’s degrees, 1,425 master’s degrees and 40 doctoral degrees. This marks the 11th consecutive year of growth in the University’s graduating class.

Portland State University’s spring commencement ceremonies will take place on Saturday, June 17, at 10 a.m. in Portland’s Rose Garden Arena. Nearly 1,800 grads will be on hand to receive degrees, with 14,000 friends and family in attendance. Oregon Congressman Peter DeFazio has accepted the University’s invitation to deliver the spring 2006 commencement address. He will also receive an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters from Portland State.

In addition to Rep. DeFazio, two students will speak: Sarah Cody (B.A., Political Science) and Sarah Spears (B.S., Psychology and Communications). Two other outstanding Oregonians, Norman Leyden and Fred Rosenbaum, will also be awarded honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degrees.

Portland State University’s spring commencement will be broadcast live on Oregon Public Broadcasting television, beginning at 10 a.m., and will be hosted by Stephanie Stricklen and Russ Lewis, newscasters from KGW 8 (NBC).

The 2006 graduating class joins 105,000 Portland State University alumni, over 75,000 of whom live in the Portland metro region. This year’s graduates represent 141 towns and cities in Oregon, 44 states and the District of Columbia throughout the U.S., and 50 countries from around the world. The youngest graduate is 19, and the oldest is 70. Women represent 59 percent of this year’s grads. The top undergraduate majors are Business, Social Science, Psychology, Science, and English.

Doors to the 2006 graduation ceremony open at 9 a.m.; the processional begins at 10 a.m. The event is ticketed and members of the general public without tickets will not be permitted entrance. Tickets are free, but are limited to members of the graduating class and their guests. Students and families needing additional information should visit

For Media: Members of the media planning on attending should contact Erin Malecha Arias at 503-725-8794 or at 503-807-7503. Media should enter through the loading dock doors located on the north side of the Rose Garden Arena. The media section will be located in Section 112, and will be marked. Media should plan to arrive at the loading dock doors no later than 9:45 a.m. and must have proper credentials to enter the arena.

Portland State University President Daniel O. Bernstine and Provost Roy Koch will be available to media for comments about graduation at Oregon’s largest university on Friday, June 16.

Commemorative Commencement DVD

A commemorative DVD of PSU's spring commencement ceremony is available to graduates, families and friends. The DVD will contain footage of the entire ceremony which includes the commencement addresses from University administration, honored guests and student speakers. Additionally, each graduating student is taped as he/she passes across the platform to receive the diploma. DVD copies are shipped three weeks after the ceremony. For more information on ordering the commemorative commencement DVD, visit

About Portland State University

Portland State University, Oregon's only urban university, is the largest and most diverse in the state system. The University's position in Oregon's economic and cultural center allows for deep community engagement and the creation of partnerships with hundreds of organizations throughout the region—partnerships that give PSU students valuable learning opportunities as they solve real-world problems of business and community. Portland State offers more than 100 undergraduate, master's and doctoral degrees, as well as graduate certificates and continuing education programs. PSU serves more students and confers more master's degrees annually than any other Oregon university.

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Office of Institutional Research and Planning
Portland State University

For Immediate Release (#06-088)