Montclair State University conferred 779 doctoral and master’s degrees in science and mathematics, humanities and the social sciences, business, the arts and education to students who completed their degree requirements in May at its Graduate School Commencement exercises on Tuesday, May 22 at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark, New Jersey.
Montclair State University President Susan A. Cole presided over the exercises and John Schreiber, President and CEO of the New Jersey Performing Arts Center received an honorary Doctor of Fine Arts degree and delivered the Commencement address.
An award-winning producer of stage, television and music programs, documentary films and cause-related events, Schreiber has headed the New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC) since 2011. Under his stewardship, NJPAC is now the country’s most diverse performing arts center in terms of programming, audience and staff. Presenting over 500 events a year, NJPAC also provides best-in-class arts education programs to more than 80,000 children and families each season.
Before taking the helm at NJPAC, Schreiber was executive vice president of social action and advocacy at Participant Media, where he was part of an executive team that produced such critically acclaimed films as An Inconvenient Truth, Lincoln, The Help and Waiting for Superman. He received a Tony award in 2002 as lead producer of At Liberty, Elaine Stritch’s one-woman Broadway show, and a 2004 Emmy Award for executive producing the HBO documentary film based on it.
In his address, Schreiber urged the students to be creative, curious, useful changemakers in their life and work. “I don’t know what you will do with your advanced degrees,” he said, “but I do know that you will have endless chances throughout your career, to expand the impact and usefulness of your profession … You may think of your degree as your chance to practice your profession and assure your future. It is also your chance to save the world.”
The celebration was the second of two Commencement ceremonies for students of The Graduate School in 2018. The first, for those who completed their degree requirements between August 2017 and January 2018, was held on January 14 at NJPAC. Between the two ceremonies, the University conferred 1,424 doctoral and master’s degrees on members of the Class of 2018.
The 2018 Undergraduate Commencement ceremony will take place on May 25, at Prudential Center in Newark.