Michael Shasberger, who retires as the inaugural Adams professor of music and worship, will deliver the address at Westmont College commencement, 9 a.m. Saturday, May 7, on the campus’ Thorrington Field. The ceremony is closed to the public but will be livestreamed at westmont.edu/commencement.
Westmont President Gayle D. Beebe will presents Westmont medals to Steven A. Fellows and Denice D. Fellows for their service and leadership in improving the delivery of healthcare.
About 267 graduates will participate in commencement, and 119 will graduate with honors. Also, 117 Golden Warriors, who graduated in 1970, 1971 or 1972 will march in the procession to celebrate their 50th reunions. Graduates Michael Kong and Taylor Mache will offer reflections.
Acting Provost Rick Ifland will give Faculty Scholarship awards to graduating seniors attaining the highest cumulative grade-point average during their four years at Westmont: Talia Bjelland, Hannah Grierson, Maggie Hine, Kong and Joshua Phillips all earned perfect 4.0 GPAs. John Corbett graduates with a triple major in biology, chemistry and religious studies.
“Our graduating students not only endured but have triumphed,” Ifland said of the class of 2022 at the Academic Awards Convocation April 25. “You are impressive, every one of you. Thank you for your patience, for your diligence and for your ability to adapt to changing circumstances.
“What an unusual college experience you’ve had. We appreciate your fantastic attitude toward each other and all that you’ve done to enrich campus life and to further the work of Westmont. You’ve been such a positive influence on campus during a very trying time. So, congratulations to all of you on your great accomplishments both in and out of the classroom.”
Shasberger, who will speak about Profiles in Learning, arrived at Westmont in 2005, bringing energy, enthusiasm and excellent music. That year, he staged the first of 17 Christmas festivals. During his time at Westmont, he has recruited outstanding student musicians, added significant scholarships, grown the orchestra, and strengthened vocal programs.
He retires in May after taking the orchestra overseas for 10 days, performing in Salzburg and Vienna, Austria, and Prague, Czech Republic, and participating in the American Celebration of Music in Austria.
The Fellows have supported Westmont as well as other nonprofits and boards in the community. Steven Fellows worked for 40 years in healthcare leadership, retiring recently after 16 years as the executive vice president/COO for Cottage Health in Santa Barbara. He previously served in leadership roles at hospitals in Los Angeles and Sacramento.
Denice Fellows served as the volunteer coordinator for Sutter Health, and as a scout executive for the Boy Scouts of America. She has served on the Westmont Foundation Board, including two years as president.
Past Westmont Medal recipients include Ron Werft, Katherine Wiebe, Lindsay and Laurie Parton, Christine and Robert Emmons, David and Anna Grotenhuis, and Lady Leslie Ridley-Tree.