Spring Commencement Ceremony

Leading evolutionary biologist Edward O. "E.O." Wilson wlil deliver the first of three commencement addresses at Florida State University’s spring graduation ceremonies.

Wilson will speak at 7:30 p.m. Friday, April 27, at the Tallahassee-Leon County Civic Center. Graduating students at the ceremony will be graduates of the colleges of Arts and Sciences; Criminology and Criminal Justice; and Human Sciences.

A two-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize for general non-fiction and a renowned researcher, theorist and naturalist, he is considered one of the world’s most prominent conservation biologists — a visionary and critical thinker who sees problems in terms of the “big picture” and argues for scientific approaches to solving them.

Wilson’s contributions to science have been recognized globally, and he is considered the “father” of the field of sociobiology, the study of the biological bases and nature of social behavior. His biological specialty is myrmecology, the study of ants, and he is widely considered the premier expert on the tiny insects.

A longtime Harvard University professor and author of more than 20 books — many considered scientific masterpieces as well as influential popular works — Wilson will receive an honorary doctorate from Florida State.

In other graduation news:

  • Al McCambry, general manager of the Knology Panama City Division, will be the keynote speaker at Florida State’s Panama City Campus commencement. The ceremony will be held at 1:30 p.m. CDT on Sunday, April 29, at the Panama City Marina Civic Center. A total of 420 degrees will be awarded during the 2011-2012 academic year to students attending the Panama City Campus; approximately 250 graduates will participate in the April 29 ceremony.
  • The convocation ceremony for Florida State’s College of Nursing will be held at 4 p.m. Friday, April 27, at the Chiles High School auditorium in Tallahassee. Professor Sally Karioth will be the speaker at the event, in which 83 candidates for bachelor’s degrees and 12 for Doctor of Nursing Practice degrees will be recognized.
  • Florida State’s U.S. Army ROTC will commission 27 cadets at a 5:30 p.m. ceremony on Saturday, April 28, in Miller Hall, located in University Center, Building C. The guest speaker will be Army Maj. Gen. Ben Hodges. Hodges is from Quincy, Fla., and is a 1980 graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. He has held command positions at the company, battalion and brigade levels, all while assigned to the 101st Airborne Division. Hodges’ most recent operational assignment was as deputy commander of operations at Regional Command South in Kandahar, Afghanistan. He currently serves as chief legislative liaison for the Secretary of the Army.
  • The Florida State College of Medicine will hold its commencement ceremony at 10 a.m. Saturday, May 19, at Ruby Diamond Concert Hall for 117 students receiving Doctor of Medicine degrees. Charles Ouimet, a professor in the college’s Department of Biomedical Sciences, will be the speaker. Ouimet is course director for clinical neurosciences at the College of Medicine, and his research focuses on neurodegeneration as seen in Alzheimer’s and Huntington’s diseases. In 2005, he received Florida State’s Distinguished Teaching Award, one of 24 teaching awards he has received during his career at Florida State.
  • The Florida State College of Law will hold its spring commencement at 10 a.m. Saturday, May 5, at the Tallahassee-Leon County Civic Center. Florida Supreme Court Chief Justice Charles Canady will be the commencement speaker. About 235 of the school’s graduating students are expected to participate in the ceremony, which will be followed by a reception on the law school green.