Hollins Celebrates the Class of 2018 on May 20

Commencement 2017

Hollins University will conduct its 176th Commencement Exercises on Sunday, May 20, at 10 a.m. on the school’s historic Front Quadrangle.

Undergraduate and graduate degrees will be conferred, including the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Arts and Fine Arts, and Bachelor of Science, as well as the Master of Fine Arts, Master of Arts, Master of Arts in Teaching, and Master of Arts in Liberal Studies. The following awards will also be announced:


  • Faculty Awards for Academic Excellence, recognizing the students with the highest academic standings in the class of 2018.
  • The Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award, honoring a senior and a member of the Hollins community who have shown by daily living those qualities that evince a love and helpfulness to other men and women.
  • The Annie Terrill Bushnell Award, presented to a senior who has evidenced the finest spirit of leadership during her days at Hollins.
  • The Jane Cocke Funkhouser Award, highlighting the junior or senior who, in addition to being a good student, is preeminent in character and leadership.

The ceremony marks the first commencement exercises at Hollins for President Pareena Lawrence, who took office last July.

Jennifer Boysko
State Delegate Jennifer Boysko ’89 will be the guest speaker at Hollins’ 176th Commencement Exercises.

Jennifer Barton Boysko, who graduated from Hollins in 1989 and is now a member of the Virginia House of Delegates representing parts of western Fairfax County and eastern Loudoun County, will be the guest speaker. Boysko majored in psychology and French as an undergraduate, but found herself in politics immediately after graduation, working in the U.S. Senate office of Richard Shelby from her home state of Alabama. Later she took a job at a D.C. government-relations firm as a legislative assistant. Boysko paused her career to be a stay-at-home mom to her two daughters, but stayed busy volunteering for Democratic campaigns, including serving as the Virginia director for the 2004 presidential campaign of Howard Dean.

In 2015, Boysko was elected to the Virginia House of Delegates for the 86th District, and last year was successful in her re-election campaign. She credits EMILY’s List—founded by Ellen Malcolm ’69—with providing financial and logistical help in both of her elections.

Hollins’ 176th Commencement Exercises will be live-streamed here.