Florida National University Celebrates Students’ Graduation for Spring 2013

FNU’s first Masters in Business Administration Class graduates.

On Sunday, May 19th, Florida National University held its Spring 2013 Commencement Ceremony. Held at the James L. Knight Center in Miami, Florida, Florida National University awarded degrees to 328 students. The university’s first Masters in Business Administration Class also graduated during this ceremony.

The ceremony began with a procession of the university’s Faculty, Administration, Board of Governors, and the President of the University, who were followed by the graduating class. The Master of Ceremony, Mr. Bernardo Navarro, Assistant Dean for the South Campus, welcomed the honored guests, faculty, students, and their families. The United States Army Color Guard then presented the colors and Mr. Navarro led the Pledge of Allegiance, which was followed by The Master Academy Lion Band’s performance of Pomp and Circumstance.

Ms. Marilyn Pozo, who graduated Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Criminal Justice, presented the Student Salutatorian Speech. During her speech, Ms. Pozo thanked her family for supporting her while she was working toward her degree. She also gave special thanks to Criminal Justice Professor Luis Gamez and the University for “making [her] dream come true.” She concluded her speech with a quote from Mark Twain, saying, “Sing like no one’s listening, love like you’ve never been hurt, dance like nobody’s watching, and live like it’s heaven on earth.”

Ms. Barbara Garcia, who was part of Florida National University’s first MBA graduating class, gave the Student Valedictorian Speech. In her speech, Ms. Garcia expressed special thanks to her grandparents saying that “without their help [she] wouldn’t be here.” When she began pursuing her MBA, Ms. Garcia was working full-time, but switched to part-time “because [she] was going to earn [her] MBA no matter what.” In her closing comments, Ms. Garcia encouraged students to continue their education.

The Keynote speaker was Ms. Lourdes de la Mata-Little, Vice President of Marketing at Goodwill Industries of South Florida. Ms. Mata-Little grew up in Miami, where she attended and graduated Our Lady of Lourdes Academy. She also graduated from Boston University. In her speech, Ms. Mata-Little explained that while she had been very happy in her initial career choices, she felt a strong desire to help people. It was then that she found a job with Goodwill Industries of South Florida as the Vice President of Marketing. In her current position, Ms. Mata-Little says she is able to “use [her] professional skills to make a difference in people’s lives.” She encouraged graduates to be contributing members of society.

Following the Keynote Speaker was City of Hialeah Mayor, Mr. Carlos Hernandez. In his speech, Mayor Hernandez encouraged the graduates “to seek mentors, to learn from others, to always ask questions, and to continue to grow by seeking knowledge.”

As the ceremony drew to a close, Mrs. Caridad Hernandez, Vice President of Academic Affiars and Mr. Jorge Alfonso, Hialeah Campus Dean, conducted the Conferral of Diplomas and Honors. Mrs. Hernandez also conducted the Degree Proclamation.

Jose Alonso, Social Media and Marketing Representative for Florida National University said that, “The Spring 2013 Commencement Ceremony was a proud moment for all of us here at Florida National University. Not only did we award degrees to 328 students, we also had our first class of students graduate with MBA degrees. We wish graduates and future students happiness and success in all their future endeavors.”


Established in 1982, Florida National University (FNU) is a higher learning institution accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award associate, baccalaureate, and master degrees.

For more information on the Spring 2013 Commencement Ceremony, please call Jose Alonso at 305-821-3333 or email jalonso(at)fnu(dot)edu