D.C. Public Schools Chancellor to Deliver Commencement Address
Antwan Wilson, Chancellor of D.C. Public Schools, will deliver the commencement address at Nebraska Wesleyan University’s 128th commencement on Saturday, May 6.
His address will be shared with 489 undergraduate and graduate students who will receive degrees. Commencement begins at 1 p.m. on Taylor Commons, located on the university’s campus.
Wilson has devoted his life to improving educational opportunities, particularly for underserved children. He credits dedicated public school teachers with his own rise from a challenging childhood.
Wilson graduated in 1995 from Nebraska Wesleyan with a degree in history-social science education. Prior to joining D.C. Public Schools in the nation’s capital early this year, he was superintendent of the Oakland (California) Unified School District. During his tenure there, the district saw increased graduation rates, decreases in out-of-school discipline, a decade-high investment in teacher pay, and historic improvements in district operations.
From 2005 to 2014, he led in Denver Public Schools, including serving as assistant superintendent for post-secondary readiness. During his tenure, DPS experienced significant improvements in graduation rates, college enrollment rates, and Advance Placement course participation and performance.
Wilson has been honored with Nebraska Wesleyan’s Young Alumni Achievement Award, and at commencement, he will receive an Honorary Doctor of Pedagogy degree.
Honorary degrees will also be bestowed on James P. Abel, chairman and CEO of NEBCO, Inc., and Marilyn Moore, retired president of Bryan College of Health Sciences. Abel became NEBCO’s president in 1985 and served in the capacity until 2004. His contributions and leadership to innovative development projects have included Lincoln’s Fallbrook neighborhood, Quarry Oaks Golf Club, and Haymarket Park. He will receive an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree.
Moore assumed the role of president of Bryan College of Health Sciences in 2012, following a career in K-12 education as a teacher and administrator for more than 40 years. She was a middle school teacher and team leader, a human resources administrator, and for 25 years she served as the associate superintendent for instruction for Lincoln Public Schools. She will receive an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree.
The university will also honor two retirees. Judy Muyskens will retire as provost, a position she has held for nine years. Her portfolio has encompassed all academic matters of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and University College, student life and athletics. Garry Duncan, senior professor of biology, is retiring after 38 years of teaching at NWU. He has served as chair of the Department of Biology, has chaired multiple university committees, and was twice honored with the Dr. Margaret J. Prouty Faculty Teaching Award.
Commencement Day begins with a baccalaureate service at 10 a.m. at First United Methodist Church.
See a complete Commencement Day schedule of events.