Tony Simmons

Florida State University Panama City will have its Spring 2024 Commencement at 6:30 p.m. Sunday, May 5, at Tommy Oliver Stadium in Panama City. Jorge Gonzalez, president and CEO of The St. Joe Co., will present the keynote address.

The event may be viewed live via Youtube at this link: https://youtube.com/live/zCbXqDnfth0?feature=share

The university will recognize students and student-veterans who have earned academic honors and distinction, including those inducted into the Garnet Key Honor Society. FSU PC will have 210 students participating in the ceremony, including some graduates who completed their degrees in the summer and fall of 2023, and others who will complete degree requirements this summer.

There will be 99 bachelor and 55 master’s degrees awarded, and for the first time ever, FSU PC will award 29 students with the Doctor of Nurse Anesthesia Practice degree. 

“This is the most participants FSU Panama City has had at the commencement ceremony since prior to Hurricane Michael in 2018,” said Jim Allen, director of Academic & Registrar Services. “Many of our graduates have also secured employment with a wide range of industries throughout Bay County, helping to contribute to the local economy during a period of expansive development and growth throughout northwest Florida.”

Twelve veterans are graduating in spring 2024. Among them, U.S. Air Force student veteran and Commercial Entrepreneurship graduate Jessica Quaile will also lead the ceremony in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.

“Each graduating student-veteran or active-duty member is provided a red, white and blue military honor cord and FSU Veterans Alliance Challenge Coin, recognizing their service and commitment to our country, as well as their academic achievements at Florida State University,” said Allen, a U.S. Navy veteran. 

Among the degrees being conferred are two masters of science in Law Enforcement Intelligence going to twin sisters Hallie and Sydney Pellerin. The sisters, one of whom has dealt with cerebral palsy since birth, earlier received their bachelor degrees in Crime Scene Investigation together.

Friends and classmates Josie Acreman and Morgan Olsen, both of whom have landed jobs in the robotics division at Naval Surface Warfare Center in Panama City, will each receive their bachelor of science in Electrical Engineering. The two are non-traditional students: Acreman is a single mom and Olsen is a medically-retired U.S. Coast Guard veteran. They will be celebrating success in a field that is traditionally dominated by men.

“Commencement is one way we celebrate and honor students’ achievements,” said Randy Hanna, dean of FSU Panama City. “Some graduates will pursue advanced degrees, while others will take the next steps in their careers, and we want to recognize this milestone in their lives.”

While the commencement ceremony is a recognition and celebration of students’ accomplishments, commencement also signifies the culminating success of all the hard work, personal attention and commitment to student success that FSU Panama City faculty and staff provide to graduates.
Jim Clark, provost and executive vice president for Academic Affairs for Florida State University, will preside over the ceremony.