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Benedict College announces the 2019 Honorary Degree Recipients

Lead Scholar and Director of the Columbia SC 63 and one of the Longest-Serving Pastors of Columbia’s First Baptist Church will be hooded at the 149th Commencement Convocation on Saturday, May 11

COLUMBIA, SC – May 9, 2019 – Benedict College Board of Trustees announced today that Civil Rights Historian, Dr. Bobby Donaldson will be conferred the Doctor of Letters (LLD) during the 149thCommencement Ceremony.  He will also be the keynote speaker for the occasion.

Dr. Donaldson is head of the Center for Civil Rights History, housed in the Hollings Special Collections Library at USC and the lead scholar and director of the Columbia SC63. Dr. Donaldson and his research team have chronicled Benedict College’s role in the Civil Rights Movement.

Benedict College will also honor the former pastor of First Baptist Church, Dr. Wendell R. Estep, for 32 years of service to the community and church leadership. Dr. Estep will be conferred the Doctor of Divinity (D.D.) during the graduation program.

When Rev. Estep announced his retirement in 2018, he was the second-longest -serving pastor in the church’s 209-year history. Estep ushered in an age of stunning growth at First Baptist, including a $13 million expansion of the downtown campus, with a 3,300-seat sanctuary.

Benedict College will award more than 190 degrees on Saturday, May 11, 2019 at 8 Charlie W. Johnson Stadium.

Benedict College

Benedict College will be a leader in providing transformative learning experiences for a diverse student body, defined by superior cultural, and professional competencies that are nurtured and developed by faculty, staff, and stakeholders who value innovation, customer service, community, and industry engagement.

Founded in 1870, Benedict College is approaching its 150years of providing high quality academic programs to students who desire to pursue their program of study in a diverse academic environment.

Benedict College offers its students transformative academic programs, in an innovative, technology enhanced, student focused, culturally sensitive learning environment.  The College is committed to preparing students to enter the global marketplace with exceptional cultural and professional competencies that will enable them to contribute to the sustainability and economic growth of their communities.

Benedict offers 25 high-demand academic programs, including, Computer Science, Engineering, Cyber Security, Mass Communication, Sport Management, Business Administration, Criminal Justice, Biology and Education.

In addition to its academic programs, Benedict College is home to the standard-setting Career Pathways Initiative (CPI) program that is strategically designed to prepare Benedict College students for success in a rapidly changing, highly competitive and technology driven workplace. CPI’s mission is to transform student scholars into focused, highly skilled critical thinkers, who are experts in their field of study.

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