LOS ANGELES--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Concord Law School of Kaplan University, the nation’s first fully-online law school, held its 24th graduation today at the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles. The graduating class included 20 graduates of the Juris Doctor program and 27 graduates of the Executive Juris Doctor program. Concord Law School Dean Larry David conferred the degrees. Concord University Alumni were also in attendance.
In his keynote address, Dr. Smith, former Vermont State Senator, Vermont Lieutenant Governor and Founding President of three higher education institutions including the Community College of Vermont, California State University and the Open College at Kaplan University (OC@KU), discussed the varied paths the graduates will embark on with their degrees.
“Every graduate should not allow this ceremony to mark the end of their education and growth as an individual,” Smith told the audience. “You must continually seek opportunities to improve yourselves and your communities. Some laws are rigid and others are up for interpretation. Approach life and the practice of law with the same analytical eye you used reading law school textbooks these past few years. Don’t be afraid to question the status quo and offer a bold idea because that is how progress is made.”
Dr. Smith, who also represented Vermont in the United States House of Representatives, has been an advocate for continued education, adult learners and work readiness programs since the beginning of his career, which spans the country and includes positions abroad. He also served as Dean of the Graduate School of Education at George Washington University and Assistant Director General for Education at the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization in Paris, France. Additionally, Dr. Smith was a member of the founding board of the Council for the Assessment of Experiential Learning and has authored several books on education.
Several students were recognized for outstanding achievement at the ceremony. Award winners included Michelle Brooker (of La Quinta, CA), Gene Cisewski (of Tomah, WI) and Lisa Jane Walton (of Walterville, OR), who received the Kaplan Award for Legal Services. The Executive Juris Doctor Award for Academic Excellence was awarded to Svetlana Hahn (of Sandusky, OH) and Rick Stone (of Vernon, AK). Raad Al-Shaikh (of Auburn, CA) received the Jack R. Goetz Award for Academic Excellence, which recognizes the Juris Doctor graduate who achieved the highest cumulative grade point average. Finally, the Sue Lane Award, honoring one student from the graduating class who embodies a strong work ethic, compassionate nature and service to the community, was also presented to Lisa Jane Walton.
About Concord Law School
Concord Law School is the nation's first fully online law school. Since opening its virtual doors in 1998, Concord has educated more than 1,800 graduates who have obtained their Juris Doctor (JD) or Executive Juris DoctorSM (EJD) degree. Concord is accredited by the Accrediting Commission of the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC), a nationally recognized accrediting agency.
Concord Law School of Kaplan University is part of Kaplan Higher Education LLC and Kaplan, Inc., which serves over 1.2 million students globally each year through its array of higher education, test preparation, professional education, English-language training, university preparation, and K-12 offerings to individuals, institutions, and businesses. Kaplan has operations in over 30 countries, employs more than 22,000 full- and part-time professionals, and maintains relationships and partnerships with more than 1,000 school districts, colleges, and universities, and over 2,600 corporations and businesses. Kaplan is a subsidiary of Graham Holdings Company (NYSE: GHC) and its largest division. For more information, please visit, www.kaplan.com.