Hawaii News

Over 600 to graduate in Hawai‘i Pacific University ceremony

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Hawai‘i Pacific University’s spring class of 2023 will be celebrated with a graduation ceremony to be held on May 6 at 10 a.m., at the Hawai‘i Convention Center.

A total of 604 students will graduate, making it the largest class to graduate in seven years.

The ceremony will be held in-person and the doors will open for attendees with a valid ticket beginning at 8:30 a.m., and will close promptly 9:45 a.m. The graduation event will be live streamed here.


Hawai‘i Pacific University President John Gotanda will deliver remarks and confer degrees and Senior Vice President and Provost Jennifer Walsh will serve as Master of Ceremonies.

Undergraduate Valedictory Speaker Blaise Babineck is a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry undergraduate student who is graduating from Hawai‘i Pacific University at 18 years old. Babineck enrolled at Hawai‘i Pacific University in 2021 and took accelerated undergraduate coursework while at the University.

A Maryknoll School graduate, Babineck developed a passion for chemistry though his AP chemistry course at the high school.


Graduate Valedictory Speaker Natalie Ediger is a Master of Arts in Strategic Communication student hailing from Augsburg, Germany. She speaks five languages and has studied or worked in Berlin, London, Seoul, Bali, New York City and Honolulu.

She earned a bachelor’s degree in international business management from the Berlin School of Economics and Law. DAAD Germany, an academic exchange organization, awarded her a fully funded scholarship to attend Hawai‘i Pacific University.

The 2023 “Teacher of the Year” award was given to Director of Choral Activities and Assistant Professor of Music Alec Schumacker. An award-winning composer and arranger, Schumacker’s choral music is published by Santa Barbara Music Publishing, Alliance Music Publications, Earthsongs, and World Projects.


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