By JEN CARDINES
This year marks the 50th annual Commencement exercises for Lincoln College of New England (LCNE). On Friday, May 12, the school formerly known as Briarwood College will honor its mid-century mark with 150 graduates receiving degrees or certificates.
The ceremony will take place at 6 p.m. at the college’s campus at 2279 Mount Vernon Rd.
On the half-century occasion, the graduation event will feature the school’s first female keynote speaker, Rhonda M. Glover.
After receiving her bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Va., Glover went on to receive a master’s degree in management from the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Md. That began her career with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in August 1984.
She was later appointed to the position of special agent in 1988, and in March 2000 Glover was promoted to supervisory special agent assigned to FBIHQ, Criminal Investigative Division, Drug Section, Colombian-Caribbean unit.
Glover spent years working her way through the Bureau’s ranks, and she continues to work with them today. She currently resides in Washington, D.C.
“She’s very accomplished,” said LCNE regional director of financial aid Gina Swenton.
Keynote speakers are chosen through a committee after recommendations are made. Glover’s recommendation came from last year’s keynote speaker, Curtis Robinson, and was later voted on by a committee.
“She came highly recommended from Curtis,” said Swenton. “When we gave her a call, she was very excited because we have a large criminal justice program.”
Glover has also received the FBI Director’s Award for Equal Employment Opportunity in recognition of her leadership, training, recruitment, and significant contributions to enhance employment opportunities for women and minorities within the FBI. It is one of the highest forms of recognition for an FBI employee.
LCNE Registrar Stephanie Crombie said that the valedictorian speaker is not yet known because students are still taking final exams over the next week.
In the event of inclement weather, the commencement will be held indoors at Southington High School, but officials are hoping for good weather.
“When it’s outdoors, it is really nice,” said Crombie. “It’s a very well-attended event.”
For more information about LCNE, visit www.lincolncollegene.edu.
To comment on this story or to contact staff writer Jen Cardines, email her at JCardines@SouthingtonObserver.com.