Commencement 2018

2018 Commencement speaker James L. Muyskens ’64

2018 Commencement speaker James L. Muyskens ’64

Commencement for the Class of 2018 took place Saturday, May 19, 2018, in H.S. Kuyper Fieldhouse. Read quotes from James L. Muyskens’ ’64 Commencement address and see stats about the Class of 2018.


“I came to Central from South Dakota as a shy, frightened, naïve 17-year-old without a clue as to what it meant to earn a college degree. All I knew for sure was that I wanted to be a high school math teacher,” said James L. Muyskens ’64 in his address to graduates.

Muyskens (B.A., Central College; M.Div., Princeton Theological Seminary; Ph.D., University of Michigan) never did become a high school math teacher, but instead a professor of philosophy and religion, a university chancellor and a transformational president of Queens College in New York City. Currently a professor at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, he has written two books and many articles on the philosophy of religion, ethics and higher education. In 1989, he received an honorary doctorate from Central College.

For Central’s graduates, he boiled a lifetime of philosophical study to nine words:

“Know yourself.” – Socrates

“Control yourself.” – Cicero

“Give yourself.” – Jesus

How’s that for pith?

Hunter Caspers '18 and Jessie Cassens '18 showing off their diplomas

Hunter Caspers ’18 and Jessie Cassens ’18 showing off their diplomas.


“The pond, built the year I graduated, is still here!”

— Commencement speaker James L. Muyskens ’64

“You are surrounded world-wide by people who care about you. Wherever you go, Central’s network of caring relationships will guide and support you. Share with us your progress so we can continue to celebrate with you.”

—Sunny Gonzales Eighmy ’99, vice president for advancement

“Graduates, I confer upon you the degrees, Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science, and entitlement to all the rights, privileges, honors and responsibilities appertaining thereto; on this 19th day of May, in the year of our Lord 2018.”

—President Mark L. Putnam

“Suma Cum Laude Magna Cum Laude Cum Laude Thank Ya Laude!”

Seen on a mortarboard


322 graduates from 14 states completed 36,990 credits and majored in 33 different subjects.


double majored.


triple majored.


had one minor, 25 had two.


were engineering majors—Central’s first!


were twins.


were husband and wife.


studied abroad.


were in music groups and ensembles and 33 took private music lessons.

About 160

competed at least one season in an intercollegiate sport, racking up seven all-America recognitions, 78 Academic All-Iowa Conference honors, six Iowa Conference team championships and competed in NCAA postseason events 27 times.

The class donated more than

toward renovating a veterans’ memorial marker on the soon-to-be-updated Peace Mall.

This Class of ’18 graduate’s mortarboard bids a fond farewell to Central and Pella.

This Class of ’18 graduate’s mortarboard bids a fond farewell to Central and Pella.

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