Winter Commencement, Saturday, Dec. 19
Dec. 14, 2009 -- Western State College of Colorado (WSC) will confer bachelor’s degrees to 78 students at its 2009 Winter Commencement on Saturday, Dec. 19
Exercises begin at 10 a.m. at the Paul Wright Gymnasium on the WSC campus.
Peter Bridges, of Crested Butte, will present the commencement address. Bridges is a writer, lecturer and retired ambassador who spent three decades in government service. Commissioned as an officer of the Foreign Service of the United States in 1957, Bridges’ assignments included serving in three federal agencies in Washington and at American embassies in Panama, Moscow, Prague, Rome and Mogadishu. From 1984 to 1986, Bridges was the American ambassador to Somalia where he oversaw the largest American aid program in Sub-Sahara Africa before Somalia’s civil war. He recounts those experiences in his first book, “Safrika: An American Envoy.”
Bridges’ career also includes serving as the executive director of the Una Chapman Cox Foundation, manager of international affairs for Shell Oil Company and as the resident representative in the Czech Republic of the European Bank for Reconstruction & Development. Today, Bridges spends his time lecturing and writing about historic figures and international diplomacy, as well as his passion for mountaineering and life in the Gunnison Valley.
Tiara Lopez will present the student address. She is an English major from Terlingua, Texas. At Western, Lopez has served as president of the college’s spoken word club, WordHorde, and is a member of the college’s Council for Creative Expression.