PULLMAN, Wash. — Washington State University will award its highest honor to Microsoft
co-founder and WSU alumnus Paul Allen at this year’s commencement in Beasley Coliseum on
Allen will receive the Regents’ Distinguished Alumnus Award. The award is presented to
WSU alumni who have made significant contributions to society and, through their
accomplishments, brought attention to the quality of an education at WSU. Allen is the 29th
recipient of this award that has also honored, among others, Edward R. Murrow, Leo K. Bustad,
Melvin Hein, Philip and Neva Abelson, Keith Jackson and Gary Larson.
Commencement ceremonies are scheduled for two sessions. Allen will receive his award at
both ceremonies and will address the graduates with a brief response.
Other speakers will include Jamie Kern, an Honors College senior who represents the
150,000th graduate in WSU’s 103-year history. Kern graduates with a perfect 4.0 grade point
average and will receive a degree in business administration with highest honors.
It is anticipated that there will be some 2,500 graduates who walk through spring
commencement at the Pullman campus. This academic year, WSU will award an estimated 3,999
bachelor’s, 631 master’s and 163 doctoral degrees.
The colleges of Liberal Arts with 1,043 May graduates, Sciences with 218, and Education
with 137 will participate in the 8 a.m. program. Agriculture and Home Economics (288), Business
and Economics (549), Engineering and Computer Science (197), Architecture (119), Pharmacy
(37), and Veterinary Medicine (76) graduates will be honored at a 1 p.m. ceremony. Some of the 94
College of Nursing graduates will attend the afternoon ceremony in Pullman, while others will
graduate in Spokane.
Branch and off-campus commencements include the WSU Seattle Center for Hotel and
Restaurant Administration, 7 p.m., Thursday, May 6, Madison Renaissance Hotel in Seattle;
WSU Spokane and the WSU College of Nursing/ICNE, 2 p.m., Friday, May 7, the Spokane Opera
House in Spokane; WSU Tri-Cities, 6 p.m., Friday, May 14, Tri-Cities Coliseum in Kennewick;
and WSU Vancouver, 1 p.m., Saturday, May 15, WSU Vancouver Campus Plaza in Vancouver.
Note to Editors and Reporters: The Pullman commencement ceremonies will be aired live on
Cable 8 television. News organizations wishing to obtain videotape or arrange for a satellite
uplink using WSU’s facilities should contact Warren Wright at 509/335-6588 no later than Friday,