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Le Moyne College Announces SU Chancellor Nancy Cantor as Speaker, Tom Young and Father Peter Major as Honorary Degree Recipients for 2013 Commencement Ceremony

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (For Immediate Release) … Le Moyne College will hold its 63rd commencement ceremony on Sunday, May 19, at 9:30 a.m. on the Le Moyne campus. Nancy E. Cantor, chancellor and president of Syracuse University, will be the commencement speaker.

Thomas G. Young ’69 and Peter Major, M.H.M., ’60 will be awarded the honorary degree of doctor of humane letters at the ceremony.

Under Chancellor Cantor’s leadership, Syracuse University built on its historical strengths, pursuing cross-sector collaborations in the City of Syracuse that simultaneously enriched scholarship and education and changed the face of this industrial city. These local engagements in key areas - such as environmental sustainability; art, technology and design; neighborhood and cultural entrepreneurship; and urban school reform – resonate nationally and globally, demonstrating the interconnectedness of the pressing issues of our world.

These efforts garnered SU the distinction of being among the first institutions to earn the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching’s classification as a university committed to community engagement. They also earned Cantor the 2008 Carnegie Corporation Academic Leadership Award.

She serves on the boards of the American Institutes for Research, the New York Academy of Sciences, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and Say Yes to Education, in addition to being past chair of the board of directors of the American Association for Higher Education and former chair of the board of the American Council on Education. She is an Honorary Trustee of the American Psychological Foundation and was national co-chair of Imagining America’s Tenure Team Initiative. She serves as co-chair of the Central New York Regional Economic Development Council, a post to which she was appointed by New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

Prior to her appointment at Syracuse, Cantor served as chancellor of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; provost and executive vice president for academic affairs at the University of Michigan; and chair of the department of psychology at Princeton University. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Sarah Lawrence College and a doctorate in psychology from Stanford University.

Thomas G. Young ’69 served as mayor of the City of Syracuse from 1986 to 1993. During his tenure, the city earned national recognition from the administrations of two presidents for outstanding achievements in urban revitalization and housing and neighborhood renewal. Young focused his attention on restoring the city’s aging elementary schools while invigorating inner-city neighborhoods by creating the Syracuse Housing Partnership, a coalition of neighborhood, business and civic leaders, which spearheaded the affordable home ownership program.

In addition, he created the Downtown Task Force, a group responsible for a multi-million dollar revitalization project that fostered a rebirth of Syracuse’s downtown business district.

Young served on the board of regents and board of trustees at Le Moyne College and is currently a Regent Emeritus. He was awarded the Simon Le Moyne medal in 2001. Young holds a bachelor’s degree from Le Moyne in industrial relations.

Peter C. Major, M.H.M. ’60 attended law school in Albany. He studied for the priesthood at Mill Hill Missionaries in England and was ordained in Skaneateles in 1968. He served as a missionary first in Borneo, working for 10 years in the interior rain forests, mastering not only the Dyak language but their birdcalls as well. Fr. Major then went to Cairo and, from there, to the southern part of Sudan.

In 1982 when war broke out in that country, he was held hostage for nearly two months before being released by rebels. After his release, he went to the capital city of Khartoum in the north, working with the one and a half million displaced people there. He currently serves in Malakal in the new nation of South Sudan, ministering to hospital patients, street children and prison inmates.

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posted on: 2/26/2013