Author McCullough tells Eastern Nazarene grads their education is just beginning

Gal Tziperman Lotan

“Read, read, read.”

That was the advice Pulitzer Prize-winning author David McCullough gave Eastern Nazarene graduates during the keynote speech of the school’s commencement Saturday afternoon, which ended just as raindrops began falling.

“The tried and true old adage of every commencement ceremony that your education is just beginning, and the reason it’s repeated again and again it because it’s true,” McCullough said. “If your experience is anything like mine, the most important books in your life, you have still to read.”

The school’s 206 graduating students then stepped forward in gowns and caps – red Eastern Nazarene baseball caps with tassels for graduates on the baseball team – to receive a diploma, handshake and hug from the school’s president, Corlis McGee.

Ashley Cornell, a Bolton, Conn., native who graduated summa cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in business, accounting and finance, posed for photos after the ceremony with three family members who were Eastern Nazarene alumni, including her 93-year-old grandfather, Derrell Cornell, who in 1939 graduated with a history degree. Ashley’s sister Alison, an Eastern Nazarene sophomore elementary education major, looked on and smiled.

Ashley said she initially planned on going to a bigger college, but loved the tight support network Eastern Nazarene offered.

“I felt like I was part of the community,” said Cornell, who will live in Quincy and work at Entertainment Cruises, a special events firm in Boston, after graduation.

The Patriot Ledger