Flagler College will hold its fall graduation ceremony for approximately 171 graduating seniors on Saturday, December 10th. Commencement begins at 9:00 a.m. and is not open to the public. A limited number of student and family tickets were made available.
The commencement speaker will be Florida State Senator Jack Latvala. He represents the state’s 16th district, which includes portions of Pinellas and Pasco counties.
Latvala first served in the state senate from 1994 to 2002, where he served as the Senate Majority Leader. During that time, he sponsored several pieces of legislation, including “Florida Forever,” a land preservation program and “Tampa Bay Water,” a national model for regional water supply planning. He also worked toward outlawing predatory title loans in the state.
Latvala then focused on his business interests after leaving the senate in 2002 but returned again in 2010 — drawn by his passion for Florida’s small businesses, environmental resources, transportation and economic sustainability.
The state senator has played a major role in helping craft policy decisions that have resulted in over 200 bills becoming law. He has received numerous honors and awards acknowledging his hard work, including being named “Legislator of the Year” by a wide range of statewide groups.
Latvala now serves as chair of General Appropriations and alternate chair of the Joint Legislative Budget Commission. He also serves on the Rules Committee, Commerce and Tourism, as well as Environmental Preservation and Conservation. In addition, the Clearwater resident serves as the chairman of the Pinellas County Legislative Delegation.
The Flagler College Public Administration program will hold its graduation later that day at 4:00 p.m. in the Flagler College Lewis Auditorium. Approximately 39 undergraduate students are set to graduate with their Bachelor of Public Administration degree.
The Public Administration program at Flagler College, directed by Dr. Don Berglund, is designed specifically to meet the educational and career objectives of public sector professionals and includes courses such as management, program evaluation, public budgeting, human resources, administrative ethics, public policy and grant writing.