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Carson-Newman University graduates over 350 during spring commencement

Knoxville’s Joan Cronan speaks to graduates during Carson-Newman University’s Spring Commencement.

(May 9, 2014)– On Friday, May 9, Knoxville’s Joan Cronan addressed some 280 graduates and families gathered for Carson-Newman University’s Spring Undergraduate Commencement. The morning event was held at the University’s Burke-Tarr Stadium.

Cronan challenged graduates to keep priorities straight in life. She encouraged the class to read their Bible, exercise, write letters, keep learning and to keep life straight at home. “In life and in tennis, it is better to serve than receive,” she said. “My challenge to you is to go out and make a difference.”

Cronan, who joined Carson-Newman’s Board of Trustees in January, serves as women’s athletic director emeritus as well as consultant and adviser to the chancellor at the University of Tennessee. Throughout her 31-year association with UT, Cronan has helped lead one of the premier women’s athletics departments in the nation, while improving women’s athletics on a local, regional and national level. Her dedication to women’s athletics and service to her community has earned her numerous awards and recognitions.

The University also held its graduate commencement ceremony Friday evening with 1962 Carson-Newman alumnus Ted Russell delivering the keynote address to over 90 students earning graduate degrees. Russell is owner of Knoxville’s Ted Russell Automotive Group, which includes Ted Russell Ford Lincoln, Ted Russell Nissan and Ted Russell Kia. The ceremony was held in the sanctuary of Jefferson City’s First Baptist Church.

Carson-Newman University is a private, Christian liberal arts institution. Founded in 1851, Carson-Newman is located in Jefferson City, Tenn., among the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains. The University has 2,045 students and offers 50 undergraduate majors, as well as bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate degrees.

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