“The classes may be over, but the learning is just beginning,” Dr. Gary Loveman told a portion of the 1,000 degree candidates at the 2009 Spring Commencement ceremonies of The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey recently. “The most important learning ahead of you is self-reflective, not based on books and disciplines. And self-reflective learning is essential to the sustenance of your most personal assets – personal integrity and responsibility.”
The words of wisdom took place following remarks from Stockton President Herman J. Saatkamp, Jr., and the conferral of an honorary doctoral degree. Dr. Loveman received a Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa from Dr. Clarence C. Hoover, III, past Chair of The Richard Stockton College Board of Trustees.
In addition to delivering the keynote address to the morning ceremony, Loveman, Chairman, CEO and president of Harrah’s Entertainment Inc., announced a $175,000 gift to the College, the Harrah’s Entertainment Endowed Scholarship. More than 2,500 people packed the Stockton Sports Center for the ceremony recognizing the schools of Graduate and Continuing Studies, Arts and Humanities, Business and Education.
In the afternoon festivities, an additional 2,500 looked on as Dr. Joseph Marchetti spoke to graduates in the schools of General Studies, Natural Sciences and Mathematics, Health Sciences, and Social and Behavioral Science. Additionally, there was a special Hooding Ceremony for graduates in Masters and Doctoral programs.
Mac and Kay Seelig, founders of AC Coin and Slot, received a Distinguished Service Award for their tireless work on behalf of Stockton and its Annual Scholarship Gala. The Seeligs’ three sons are Stockton Alumni.
Dr. Loveman’s address to Stockton graduates highlighted the Harrah’s organization commitment to education. Earlier this year, Harrah’s Entertainment established the Harrah’s Entertainment Endowed Scholarship at Stockton with a generous donation totaling $175,000. The scholarship will reward and encourage Harrah’s employees who excel in completing their studies at Stockton. The 2009 recipient of the award is Ms. Lisette McFarland, a resident of Atlantic City and Harrah’s Slot Supervisor. The College is noted for its programs in Business, Accounting, Marketing and its dedicated Bachelors program in Tourism and Hospitality Management which provide the Atlantic City gaming and tourism industry with leaders and employees.
As a result of Stockton’s partnership with Harrah’s over the past two years, with Harrah’s as a lead sponsor for the Stockton College’s Scholarship Benefit Gala, $1.7 million dollars was raised for student scholarships at Stockton. These scholarships reward the best and brightest students, and make college more affordable for families. Harrah’s has led by example in its commitment to higher education and in encouraging its business partners to do the same to have a positive impact on the future of young people in this Atlantic City and southern New Jersey area.
Dr. Loveman is a former Alfred Sloan Doctoral Dissertation Fellow and associate professor at Harvard University’s School of Business Administration. He earned a Ph.D. in economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. His bachelor’s degree in economics is from Wesleyan University.