Commencement—is one of the highlights of the year at any university and UNG is no different. In early May, we celebrated with more than 1,250 graduates who walked across the stage in our new Convocation Center to receive their degrees. I couldn’t be more pleased with their success.Our commencement speakers in May included Gen. Stephen Townsend, an alumnus and now commander of the U.S. Army’s TRADOC division; Yvette Daniels, an executive with the Georgia Department of Public Health; and Bill Mitchell, an alumnus and now president of Cici’s Pizza. It was good to hear Bill Mitchell, whose career has included international leadership in the restaurant industry, say, “The University of North Georgia is no longer the ‘Best Kept Secret.’” He was referencing a book, Georgia’s Best Kept Secret, written by a faculty member years ago that highlighted the school’s extensive, but understated, reputation for quality.
Indeed, UNG’s academic programs, reputation, and footprint have grown since then, and the university is getting well deserved recognition that underscores the value and educational experience we offer. Today, UNG is consistently recognized nationally for academic quality and affordability, and this spring UNG was one of only three public universities in Georgia named by Forbes Magazine to its ‘Best Value College’ list and was nationally distinguished as a top-producer of Fulbright Students and Gilman Scholars.
Since 1873, UNG has prepared generations of civic, professional and military leaders, and that tradition is alive and well today. As we send our newest graduates into an exciting new chapter in their lives, we know they have earned more than an education; they have a foundation for lifelong success, service and leadership.
This issue highlights many of our student, faculty, staff and alumni accomplishments from across UNG’s five campuses, and I hope you enjoy reading about their achievements. Thank you for your support of UNG – one of Georgia’s leading universities!
Bonita C. Jacobs, Ph.D.