Lawrence University hands out diplomas to record number of grads

APPLETON – Four years of study and hard work paid off for graduates of Lawrence University in Appleton.

Hundreds of graduates gathered under a tent Sunday on the Main Hall Green. That’s where diplomas were presented to the grads.

Commencement speaker Charlie Gibson, a former ABC News anchor, received an honorary degree.

Gibson spoke to the class of 2014 about moral character. He also thanked them for his warm welcome on campus this weekend.

“It’s also wonderful if somebody from ABC would get a warm reception in the Fox Valley,” said Gibson, sparking laughter in the crowd.

Lawrence University has been around for 167 years.

The class of 2014 is the largest graduating class on record.

A total of 366 students earned their baccalaureate degree this year.

The diploma is already paying off. Labor department statistics show graduates of 4-year colleges last year earned 98 percent more an hour, on average, than those without a degree.

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