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Baruch College to Graduate more than 5,000 Students at 2019 Commencement Ceremony on June 3 at Barclays Center

Baruch College’s 2019 Commencement ceremony takes place on Monday, June 3 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, conferring 5,179 undergraduate and graduate students from the Marxe School of Public and International Affairs, the Weissman School of Arts and Sciences, and the Zicklin School of Business. The event will begin at 9:30 am. 

Baruch College President Mitchel B. Wallerstein, PhD, will preside over the exercises and David Christy, PhD, provost and senior vice president for academic affairs, will serve as the master of ceremonies. The Class of 2019 includes more than 3,800 undergraduate and more than 1,200 graduate degree recipients.

Watch: View a livestream of the event on the College’s homepage,

Share: Follow and share on Baruch’s social media channels: Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.

Keynote Speaker

Honorable Carl E. Heastie, serving as the 100th Speaker of the New York State Assembly, will deliver the keynote address.

Speaker Heastie (D, 83rd A.D.) has the historic distinction of being the first African American to serve as leader of the Chamber’s 150 members representing communities across New York State. He has served in the Assembly for 18 years representing the northeast Bronx.

A distinguished alumnus of Baruch College, Heastie received his Master in Business Administration with a concentration in finance from the Zicklin School of Business in 2007. A product of New York City’s public schools, Heastie has been an advocate for education throughout his career.

Read more about Heastie’s political accomplishments here.

Alumnus Receiving Honorary Degree

Max Berger (’68) will be awarded the degree of Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, to recognize his decades-long dedication to the mission and vision of the College. Mr. Berger, a founding partner of the law firm Bernstein Litowitz Berger & Grossmann LLP, received a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in accountancy from Bernard M. Baruch School of Business and Public Administration at City College, as it was then known.

As a student leader, he played a pivotal role in advocating for the “Baruch School” to become independent of City College. Since that successful fight, Mr. Berger’s dedication to the mission and vision of Bernard M. Baruch College has been unwavering.

This year, Baruch College celebrates its 50th anniversary as a senior college of The City University of New York.

Read more about Mr. Berger’s career accomplishments here.

Valedictorian and Salutatorian

Vasiliki (Vickie) Savvides is the valedictorian for the Class of 2019. She graduates from Baruch and the Macaulay Honors College with a Bachelor of Business Administration in accounting, minors in New York studies and Spanish, and a concentration in philosophy.

Savvides is also a Max Berger Pre-Law Fellow at Baruch, as well as a fellow of The Futures Initiative at CUNY. 

She has earned numerous accolades for academic excellence and co-curricular engagement, including honors and awards from Beta Gamma Sigma, Golden Key International Honor Society, Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society, and the 2019 Dr. Susan A. Locke Award for outstanding selfless service to the campus community.

Ms. Savvides will return to Baruch in the fall to pursue a Master of Science in taxation.

The salutatorian for the Class of 2019 is Jean-Sebastien Surena, who is receiving a Bachelor of Business Administration in computer information systems from the Zicklin School of Business and a minor in theater from the Weissman School of Arts and Sciences. 

As a student, Mr. Surena received several scholarship awards including the Paul H. Chook Cybersecurity Scholarship and the Hugh Lamle Scholarship. He also won the Irving Greger Student Leadership Award of the Class of 1985, which is given to an undergraduate or graduate student who demonstrates characteristics of caring and sensitivity for others, and a commitment to the furtherance of the well-being of the College.

Throughout his time at Baruch, Surena displayed leadership skills and lent support for numerous clubs and organizations including the Undergraduate Student Government Arts Committee, as well as head editor of Pre-Recorded Friday Nights of Baruch. Surena served as an executive peer mentor in the First-Year Seminar, and was an orientation leader where he assisted new students in their adjustments to college life.  

In August, Surena will begin a full-time position as a technology advisor at Ernst & Young.

Learn more about Ms. Savvides and Mr. Surena here.  

Watch and Follow the 2019 Commencement

A livestream of the 2019 Commencement ceremony beginning at 9:30 a.m. will be available on the Baruch College website.

Follow and share Commencement news on Baruch’s social media channels: Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.

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 (Story published on 5/21/19)




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