Brother Francis Blouin Keynotes 49th Commencement Ceremony, April 29
What's New, 2012-04-10
Walsh's third President Brother Francis Blouin, F.I.C., was the keynote speaker for the 49th Walsh University Commencement Ceremony on Sunday, April 29. A total of 631 graduates received degrees during the Walsh's 2011-2012 school year which is Walsh's largest graduating classes to date.
Local News Coverage of Brother Blouin's Visit and Walsh Commencement
During the ceremony, Brother Francis Blouin was honored with the Walsh Founders' Award.The Founders' Award was established in 1985 and is awarded to those who have achieved national stature by illustrating in their lives the same ideals that inspired the Venerable John de La Mennais, saintly founder of the Brothers of Christian Instruction. These ideals are faith in God, fidelity to the Catholic Church, active concern for Christian education, dedication to authentic social justice and courageous promotion of human welfare especially among those less fortunate and disenfranchised.
Renamed the Founders’ Award in 2004, the medal recognized the joint efforts of the venerable Father John de La Mennais and Father Gabriel Deshayes in founding the Brothers of Christian Instruction.
Walsh also honored alum Robert J. Shearer, '74 and Alfred A. Olivieri with Distinguished Service Medals. The Distinguished Service Medal is awarded to those who have rendered distinguished professional or voluntary service to others within the national, regional or local community
Walsh University's third President, Brother Francis Blouin, exemplifies servant-leadership and global service. Br. Francis Blouin served as Walsh University's third president from 1978 until his retirement in 1992. Among his many accomplishments during his tenure at Walsh, Br. Francis was responsible for bringing four Nobel Peace Prize winners to the North Canton campus including Willy Brandt in 1983, Elie Wiesel in 1987, Adolfo Perez Esquival in 1986, and, most notably, Mother Teresa in 1982. After fourteen years as Walsh's president, Br. Francis retired in 1992 and has spent the majority serving as the Director of the Kisubi Brothers University Centre, in Kisubi, Africa, and participating in countless initiatives to bring higher education to the people of Uganda. On February 6, 2012, the Brother Francis Blouin Academic Centre Building at the Kisubi Brothers University campus was formally dedicated in honor of his retirement as the Centre's director.
Ceremony Formally Introduced the New Br. Blouin Global Scholars Program
The ceremony also marked the formal announcement of the new Blouin Global Scholars Program. This new program that will combine scholarship and service to address major global issues will be based out of the University's Office of Global Learning.
Walsh Blouin Scholars will live in the new residence hall currently under construction and slated to open in August 2012. All classes will be built into the core curriculum and center on a common global theme. Students will be able to choose their desired majors and minors. Those selected to participate as Blouin Scholars will be supported with opportunities such as global learning in Africa and Europe, special lectures and co-curricular activities, and priority registration and advising procedures.