USD graduation ceremony multiplies this year; move to Slagle Hall forces additional events by M. Jill Karolevitz Jeanne and James Gustafson, of Vail, CO and Tucson, AZ, will address University of South Dakota�s spring graduates May 12 during four different ceremonies at Slagle Hall.
Mr. Gustafson�s presentation is titled �Reflections.� Mrs. Gustafson will present �Eat Dessert First.�
Because the DakotaDome is closed as its roof is replaced, university officials have chosen Slagle Hall as the venue for spring commencement. Its smaller size, however, has also forced a change in scheduling. There will be four 90-minute ceremonies to accommodate graduates and their guests.
Master�s and doctoral degree candidates, along with students from the School of Medicine and School of Law, will cross the stage at 8 a.m. Later in the morning, at 10 a.m., graduates from the College of Fine Arts and School of Education will receive their diplomas.
Afternoon commencement ceremonies begin with the College of Arts and Sciences at 1 p.m. The day will conclude with the awarding of diplomas to students in the School of Business and associate degrees at 3 p.m.
Slagle Hall�s size limitations also affects the number of guests students invite to the culmination of their college days. All students participating in graduation were initially allowed up to six tickets for friends and relatives. After the number of seats needed was determined, students who wanted more tickets were able to request them on a first-come, first-served basis. The overflow crowd will be able to watch a broadcast of the graduation ceremonies in Farber Hall and the large classrooms in Old Main.
USD President James W. Abbott and Regent James O. Hansen will confer the degrees. Faculty marshals include USD professors Marlys Boschee, Steve Bucklin, Diane Duin, Tom Geu, Randall Gingiss, Kurt Hackemer, Werner Kitzler, Leon Korte, Solveig Korte, June Larson, Mary Mock, David Moen, Karen Olmstead, Roberta Rude, Carol Stuart, Robert Wood, Barbara Yutrzenka, and Jerry Yutrzenka.
Emeriti faculty Joan England, Allen Johnson, Corinne Milburn, and Richard Oppedahl will be honorary marshals. B.J. Benson, Shelly Anne Bottorff, Traci Ellen Dybvig, Lora L. Moriarty, Kenneth Darrel Oakley and Sonja Marte Olson will perform the Alma Mater at commencement. USD Alumni Association board member Douglas Shull will deliver the alumni welcome to graduating students.
Mrs. Gustafson was born in Yankton and graduated from Yankton High School in 1964. She was a member of the YHS debate team that won the state debate championship and attended nationals in 1964. She also won first superior in state humorous declam and state women�s extemporaneous speaking that year.
Mrs. Gustafson attended Girls State and represented South Dakota at the Girl Scouts All States Encampment. She attended USD from 1964 to 1967 and was elected president of Pi Beta Phi sorority. She was also selected for Guidon and Mortar Board.
Mrs. Gustafson graduated from the University of Nebraska in 1968 with a bachelor of arts degree in English. She has taken a varied career path since then. She taught English at Northeast High School in Lincoln, was a computer programmer for TIAA-CREF, in New York City and was a systems analyst for The Hartford (Insurance) Group in Hartford, CT. Mrs. Gustafson was also a research analyst/investment consultant for Hewitt Associates, Deerfield, IL, and product manager of performance measurement for Bankers Trust in New York City.
Mrs. Gustafson�s resume' also includes being an investment consultant for Peat Marwick in New York City, and an investment consultant, senior vice president and partner for Evaluation Associates in Norwalk, CT. She is also a past member of the board and current chairman of the investment subcommittee of the National Board of the Girl Scouts, as well as a previous volunteer for AirLifeline.
Mr. Gustafson was born in Joliet, IL, and graduated from Huron High School in 1963. He graduated from USD in 1967, with a bachelor of arts degree in history and economics.
Mr. Gustafson was a member of Delta Tau Delta fraternity and the golf team. He attended graduate school at the University of Nebraska from 1968 to 1969. He joined General Reinsurance in July of 1969, serving as president and chief operating officer from 1995 to 1999. He was president and chief operating officer of the St. Paul Companies in St. Paul, MN from 1999 to 2000.
The Gustafsons were married in 1967. They are currently living in Vail, CO, and Tucson, AZ. They enjoy skiing, golf and flying. Both are pilots and they own a twin engine King Air F90.