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Provost Marilyn Sheerer (left) adjusts the doctoral hood for David Congdon '78 (center) who received an honorary Doctor of Business Degree in recognition of his contributions to his profession and to UNCW. Chancellor Sartarelli looks on at right.
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Chancellor Sartarelli

December 2019

Message from Chancellor Jose V. Sartarelli

Dear Seahawk Community, 

December is a joyous month, and there is no one more joyous on our campus than our graduating seniors, along with the faculty and staff who supported them in reaching their goals! I am incredibly proud of all who helped the more than 2,200 students of the Class of 2019 cross the finish line! 

On a related note, 10 student-athletes who graduated were honored for their academic achievements during the Athletics Department’s special "Senior Sashing" ceremony. The tradition, entering its ninth year, features head or assistant coaches from UNCW's teams presenting student-athletes with a sash or decorative ribbon inscribed with "Student-Athlete" to wear during the ceremony. 

At commencement, David Congdon ’78 was presented with an Honorary Doctor of Business degree in recognition of exceptional contributions to his profession and the university. He received the degree alongside the first cohort of students to graduate from the David S. Congdon School of Supply Chain, Business Analytics and Information Systems. The transformational gift given by David and his wife, Helen, ensures that UNCW will be at the forefront of addressing pressing needs of the region, educating future business leaders and innovators at a high level of distinction. 

More than 150 donors generously contributed almost $30,000 in support of the Giving Tuesday initiative. We are so appreciative of the alumni, parents, faculty, staff, students and friends of UNCW who showed their Seahawk support on a day of global giving. 

We are eagerly looking ahead to 2020, when construction of Veterans Hall will be complete, as well as two buildings in the new student housing village; Dobo Hall will be repaired, renovated and restored; work will begin on the Coastal Engineering facility; and progress will be made on the renovation and expansion of Randall Library. In addition, we look forward to completion of the new parking deck. The year closes on a high note for UNCW, as we are listed among the Top 100 Public National Universities in the latest U.S. News & World Report rankings. This is the first time UNCW has been included in the national category since receiving the elevated designation of “Doctoral Universities: High Research Activity” institution from the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education last year. 

In closing, I invite you to enjoy a special holiday message from our Seahawk family. I hope your well-deserved holiday break is happy, healthy and peaceful!

Go Seahawks!


Jose V. Sartarelli

UNCW graduated more than 2,200 Seahawks during fall commencement exercises. See this multimedia presentation highlighting some of the most memorable moments. 

Three musicians in front of the holiday tree at Kenan House.
Chancellor and Mrs. Sartarelli hosted a holiday reception at Kenan House for executive board members and Wilmington Society Donors.

WCE doctoral candidates, group shot, on stairs in the Education Building
Ten doctoral candidates from the Watson College of Education received their degrees during fall commencement. The college held a reception in the Education Building in recognition of their achievements.

Carmen Sidbury

WATCH: Carmen Sidbury, Director, Center for Education in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics

Jonathan Graves

Jonathan Graves, Business Applications Analyst

Antonia Johnson ’94, ’01MSA, ’19Ed.D.

Antonia Johnson ’94, ’01MSA, ’19Ed.D., Educational Leadership

Andrew Castagno '20M

WATCH: Andrew Castagno '20M, Graduate Student Researcher

Ebony Bryant '01

Ebony Bryant '01, Director of Diversity Initiatives, Duke University

Caleb Bryson ’19

Caleb Bryson ’19, December Graduate

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