"A superb example of a modern graduating class"

2013 Spring Graduating Class is the Largest Ever - Over 1,100 Graduates Receive Diplomas

April 21, 2013

Graduation spring 2013
The College celebrated its largest graduation to date on Sunday, April 21, with over 1,100 graduates earning diplomas.
Photo by Heratch Ekmekjian.

"On behalf of the faculty, leadership and staff of Northeastern University's College of Professional Studies (CPS), I wish to thank you for how you have inspired us," said John LaBrie, dean of CPS and vice president for professional education, in his opening address to the spring 2013 graduating class. "You inspire us with your determination, with your intelligence, and most of all, your bright futures.  It is an honor to mark this important day with you."

Dean LaBrie also acknowledged the tragedies that unfolded in Boston this past week in his opening remarks.

"In the words of the great Boston writer Dennis Lehane who addressed the College of Professional Studies graduation last April, we'll move forward together because, and I quote - "what we'll cling tightest to is what the city was built on — resilience, respect and an adoration for civility and intellect."

Among thousands in attendance – including graduates, families and friends, staff and faculty, and administration leaders – the College awarded 10 associate, 262 bachelor's, 765 master's, and 69 doctoral degrees at the ceremony at Matthews Arena on the Northeastern University campus in Boston. Students from across the U.S. and 34 countries made up the 2013 graduating class.

Karen Kaplan
Karen Kaplan told graduates that their education has prepared them to become modern leaders. Photo by Heratch Ekmekjian.

Karen Kaplan, President of Hill Holliday – one of the top marketing agencies in the country – was the College's graduation speaker, and provided advice and words of wisdom to the College's graduates. Kaplan oversees advertising campaigns for some of the world's top brands like Dunkin' Donuts, Verizon Wireless and Bank of America. She rose through the ranks of Hill Holliday over 30 years ago when she started there as a receptionist, a brief "pause" before she headed to law school. Kaplan is also the Chairman of the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce and is only the second woman to chair The Chamber in 103 years.

Kaplan addressed the graduates and families, noting that they are prepared for a rise to modern leadership, "...equipped to drive the needed change" in our country and world. Kaplan elaborated on the modern leaders the world needs: "modern leaders are values-based. They have the moral courage to make their decisions based on their values .... Modern leaders are collaborative and inclusive ... they are non-hierarchical and judge ideas on merit ... open to considering alternatives, resulting in better decisions ... I can't wait to see the impact on the world that you will make as you ascend to the top of your professions as modern leaders."

More about graduation

The College of Professional Studies celebrates two graduations, fall and spring, in keeping with the College's flexible approach to education offering an array of options to students including part-time and full-time studies, Fast-Track, online, and hybrid formats.

To learn more about graduation, visit our 2013 graduation web page.

To read about the recipients of the Excellence in Teaching Award please visit:

An "Inspiring Instructor who Encourages Intellectual Risk-Taking"

An Instructor who "Encourages Students to Attempt Challenging Problems without Fear or Failure"

Northeastern University's College of Professional Studies (CPS) is committed to providing career-focused educational programs that are designed to accommodate the complex lives of motivated learners. Offered in a variety of innovative formats, CPS courses are taught by accomplished scholars and practitioners who have real-world experience. The result is an educational experience founded on proven scholarship, strengthened with practical application, and sustained by academic excellence.

Founded in 1898, Northeastern is a comprehensive, global research university. The university offers more than 80 undergraduate majors and more than 165 graduate programs, ranging from professional master's degrees to interdisciplinary PhD programs. Northeastern's research enterprise is aligned with three national imperatives: health, security and sustainability. Northeastern students participate in co-op and other forms of experiential learning in 90 countries on all seven continents.