Mount Michael, St. Cecilia School and Joslyn Art Museum, Among Honorees at Creighton University’s December Commencement
Creighton University will honor Mount Michael Benedictine Abbey and School, St. Cecilia Cathedral Elementary School, Joslyn Art Museum and a special alumnus during winter commencement ceremonies at 11 a.m., Saturday, Dec. 16, in Creighton’s Kiewit Convocation and Fitness Center. University President, the Rev. John P. Schlegel, S.J., will preside at the ceremony, when 241 students will receive their degrees. A baccalaureate Mass is scheduled for 9 a.m. in St. John’s Church.
Special awards of recognition will go to people and organizations that have made a positive difference in the Omaha community and around the country. Mount Michael Benedictine Abbey and School, St. Cecilia Cathedral Elementary School and Joslyn Art Museum will receive a Presidential Medallion. Sharon Culhane Harper, a 1969 graduate, will receive the Alumni Achievement Citation.
For half a century, Mount Michael Benedictine Abbey and School has not only operated in the Benedictine tradition, but has also carried on the apostolate of education to help shape young men with a fast-paced college-preparatory curriculum. Abbott Emeritus Raphael Walsh, O.S. B., president of Mount Michael Benedictine High School will accept the award.
St. Cecilia Cathedral Elementary School has been a part of the Omaha community for 100 years. The school has educated thousands of young people to become upstanding Christian citizens and adults. This year marks the founding of the school by the Sinsinawa Dominican sisters. Accepting the award will be Principal Bonnie Pryor and the Rev. Michael Gutgsell, rector and pastor.
For bringing art, education and enjoyment to the Omaha area, Joslyn Art Museum will also receive the Presidential Medallion. As the museum celebrates its Diamond Jubilee, the institution is being recognized for its exhibitions, public events and musical performances as well as its special efforts to offer educational activities tailored to children. Director J. Brooks Joyner will be accepting the award.
Creighton will present its highest alumni award, the Alumni Achievement Citation, to Sharon Culhane Harper, a 1969 graduate of Creighton’s College of Arts and Sciences.
A dynamic business and community leader in the Phoenix area, Harper believes that executives must also be community leaders. She is involved in numerous national, regional and community business and service-oriented endeavors advocating for the inclusion of Catholic, Jesuit values in all aspects of life. She serves as president and CEO of The Plaza Companies, a premier Arizona-based real estate development, investment and management firm. She and her firm have received numerous awards, including “Women of the Year” by Today’s Arizona Woman Magazine and the Athena Award by the Arizona Chamber of Commerce. She is also active in many boards, including the Arizona Community Foundation, Executive Board for Greater Phoenix Leadership, and Arizona’s Film and Television Commission.