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Shane Portfolio and Michelle Lucero to deliver Commencement keynotes

Celebrate fall graduates at morning and afternoon ceremonies Friday at the Denver Coliseum.

By Tim Carroll

December 13, 2018

Students celebrating commencementMetropolitan State University of Denver will honor the hard work and dedication of our inspiring graduates at Fall Commencement on Friday at the Denver Coliseum. This semester’s graduating class includes a number of truly outstanding scholars, including the University’s first Health Administration and Business Administration master’s degree recipients.

Shane Portfolio — senior vice president at Comcast, Army veteran and MSU Denver alum — will provide the keynote address for the 9 a.m. ceremony for the Colleges of Business and Professional Studies. Michelle Lucero, chief administration officer and general counsel at Children’s Hospital Colorado and former MSU Denver trustee chair, will deliver the afternoon’s keynote at 3 p.m. to College of Letters, Arts and Sciences and School of Education graduates. President Janine Davidson, Ph.D., will give welcoming remarks and introductions. 

Luis Paredes, the fall 2018 President’s Award recipient, will deliver the student address during the morning ceremony, and Becky Alter, recipient of the 2018 Provost’s Award, will address the afternoon ceremony.

With a 3.77 grade-point average, Paredes is graduating with a bachelor’s degree and Master of Accountancy, which he hopes to exercise as a tax advisor. Alter is graduating with an interdisciplinary degree in sustainability, mitigation planning and communication, having earned a 4.0 GPA. She plans to focus on built environments, natural resources and climate-change mitigation tactics.

This semester’s graduates are also representative of MSU Denver’s commitment to diversity. An estimated 1,184 bachelor’s degrees (an increase over last fall’s 1,087) will be presented to a class that includes 431 students of color, led by 266 Latina/o students and 24 ASSET students. The fall graduates range in age from 20-year-old marketing major Alexander Anaya to 66-year-old art major Gael Guyotte.

Transfer students make up 66 percent of this semester’s graduates, and veterans comprise 5 percent. Forty-three percent of graduates are first-generation students, and 26 percent secured STEM-focused degrees. Consistent with national higher-education trends, women continue to outpace men at MSU Denver, this semester representing 57 percent of graduates.

The graduates’ top five majors, in order, are biology, psychology, criminal justice and criminology, management and accounting. One-hundred thirty-six students are seeking teacher licensure, and 46 students will receive master’s degrees — among them 23 in accountancy, 12 in teaching, nine in health administration and two in business administration.

Faculty and staff are highly encouraged to attend the graduation ceremonies and honor MSU Denver’s newest alumni. Find more Commencement details at


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