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Alums to address 2020, 2021 grads in separate outdoor ceremonies

Graduates in caps and gowns celebrate their graduation Tim Sofranko
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Two accomplished alumni will give addresses at separate in-person, outdoor commencement ceremonies to honor the classes of 2020 and 2021.

Keith Kenter ’84, an orthopaedic surgeon and a professor at Western Michigan University, will deliver the commencement address recognizing the Class of 2021. It is scheduled for May 23.

Sarah Herrlinger ’94, Apple Inc.’s senior director of global accessibility policy & initiatives, will speak at the June 6 ceremony honoring the Class of 2020.

Both events are scheduled for 10 a.m. in Reavis Stadium, rain or shine.

Keith Kenter portraitKenter is chair of the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at Western Michigan’s Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine. He studied zoology at DePauw, then went on to receive a master’s degree in biology from Saint Louis University and his M.D. from the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Medicine. He completed his residency in orthopaedic surgery at Duke University Medical Center and a fellowship in sports medicine and shoulder reconstruction at The Hospital for Special Surgery.

He said giving the commencement address is “a great opportunity to celebrate the scientist and the analytical thinker that our university so strongly supports.” He said he plans to talk to the graduates about enhancing intellectual maturity and emotional maturity after graduation. 

Sarah Herrlinger Herrlinger, who joined Apple in 2003, looks “at accessibility at a 30,000-foot level, across everything that Apple does – products, stores, contents, services.”

She said she still intends to focus on how graduates can use their DePauw degree to build a future that nurtures their curiosity and empowers them to help others, while acknowledging the impact of the past year.

Herrlinger was set to be the commencement speaker last year when the COVID-19 pandemic forced cancellation of the ceremony. The university conferred degrees on 472 graduating seniors in a virtual ceremony streamed live last May 17 on YouTube.


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