Princeton holds 257th Commencement

June 1, 2004 2:40 p.m.

Princeton graduates received more than their degrees during the University's 257th Commencement on Tuesday, June 1. In her address to the students, President Shirley M. Tilghman reminded the class of 2004 that their diplomas carry with them a responsibility.

"Today you enter the world as adults, and as adults educated at one of the finest universities in the world, you have an obligation to make this world a better place for all of us," she said.

The University awarded degrees to 1,104 undergraduates and 686 graduate students. It also conferred honorary doctoral degrees upon five individuals for their contributions in the fields of education, science, arts and humanities, philanthropy and civil rights: Edward Cone, Princeton professor emeritus of music; Pablo Eisenberg, advocate for philanthropic change and social justice; Charles Kao, pioneer of fiber optical research; Nannerl Keohane, president of Duke University; and Robert Moses, educator and civil rights leader.

Ruth Tennen, a molecular biology major from Collinsville, Conn., delivered the valedictory oration. She praised her Princeton professors for teaching students to "challenge the intellectual status quo."

"Our Princeton experiences have taught us how to challenge expectations and how to confront traditional thinking with a critical eye," she said. "Thank you, teachers, for allowing us to challenge -- or rather, insisting that we challenge."

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Contact: Lauren Robinson-Brown (609) 258-3601