BUIES CREEK - Campbell University held its Winter Commencement ceremony for undergraduate, graduate and first professional students on Saturday, Dec. 15 at the John W. Pope, Jr. Convocation Center. A total of 477 graduates were recognized for degrees earned in August 2012 and December 2012.
Dr. Tan Chik Heok, principal and CEO of Tunka Abdul Rahman College (TAR College) in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, delivered the commencement address. Since 1979, Campbell has partnered with TAR College to offer a Bachelor of Science degree in Kuala Lumpur. Currently, over 900 students are enrolled in the Campbell program, which has produced over 13,000 alumni.
“For young people, education is the only hope for a future successful life,” he commended graduates. “You are here because of your hard work and perseverance and I congratulate you as you embark on the next journey to employment or further education.”
Degrees were awarded Saturday to students from Campbell’s main and extended campuses and six of Campbell’s schools -- the College of Arts and Sciences, College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences, School of Education, Divinity School, Lundy-Fetterman School of Business and Norman A. Wiggins School of Law.
Michael E. Mason, professor of military science at Campbell, also commissioned one ROTC cadet. Giovanna Preston of Chesterfield, Va., a bio-chemistry major, was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the United States Army.
Campbell President Jerry Wallace presided over the commencement ceremony and awarded an honorary Doctor of Science degree to Tan.
“We are so proud of Dr. Tan and his exemplary work with the University’s program in Malaysia. He has been involved in Campbell’s program at TARC nearly since the beginning and is helping to produce Campbell graduates that live and work all over the world,” said Wallace.
As principal and CEO of TAR College, Tan manages six campuses that enroll more than 25,000 students and has about 1,600 faculty and staff.
A specialist in the field of laser technology who received his bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in science from the University of Malaya, Tan joined TAR College as a lecturer in 1982. He became head of the college’s Microelectronics and Physics Division in 1995, deputy head of the college’s School of Arts and Sciences in 1999 and head of the school in 2000. After serving about six years as founding dean of the University of Tunku Abdul Rahman’s Faculty of Information and Communication Technology, Tan returned to TAR College in 2008 as principal and CEO.
To honor Tan’s contributions to Malaysia, the nation’s king conferred the award of Panglima Jasa Negara), which carries the title “Datuk,” to him in June 2012. On Friday, Dec. 14, Tan received a key to the City of Dunn, N.C.
Photo by Bennett Scarborough