Graduates challenged to be open to new possibilities

Graduates at Commencement

May 12, 2013 - Be brave and face your fears.

That was part of the advice offered to Quinnipiac graduates by Denise D'Ascenzo, weekday anchor of WFSB-TV's 5:30 and 6 p.m. newscasts.

D'Ascenzo gave the keynote address at the 2013 Graduate Commencement ceremony held 10 a.m. on Sunday, May 12, in the TD Bank Sports Center on the York Hill Campus.

D'Ascenzo challenged graduates to trust their instincts and overcome their personal fears, both in their lives and their careers. "Succeed in conquering your fear and the payoff is liberation like you've never known," she said.

The 30-year news veteran also advised graduates to be open to new ideas and possibilities. "The universe may be leading you down a path you never imagined," said D'Ascenzo, who was awarded an honorary degree at the ceremony.

D'Ascenzo offered an example from the early days of her career, when a professor encouraged her to apply for a job reporting on the weather, despite the fact that her real passion was for news. She took his advice and was hired for the job, which offered "perfect training ground" for her later career as an anchor because it taught her to think on her feet.

She concluded with final words of wisdom: be kind in your words and actions. "Set an example by doing your job and living your life with kindness."

The University awarded 747 graduate degrees to students in the School of Business, the School of Communications, the School of Education, the School of Health Sciences and the School of Nursing.

The ceremony also included remarks from President John Lahey; Mark Thompson, senior vice president for academic and student affairs; and Marylynn Barr, a graduate of the occupational therapy program and president of the Graduate Student Council.

The University held a Commencement ceremony for the School of Law at 3 p.m. on Sunday, May 12. View coverage. The University will hold two Undergraduate Commencement ceremonies on Sunday, May 19.