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Tip Sheet for the week of May 16, 2011

RELEASED: May 16, 2011

Story/Photo Idea
Commencement exercises for more than 1,350 students will begin at 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturday, May 21, in Zorn Arena. Casey Sylla, a 1966 education graduate and current president of the UW-Eau Claire Foundation board of directors, will deliver the "Charge to the Class" at both ceremonies. A reception for graduates and guests will follow each ceremony on the Central Campus Mall. The rain site for the reception is the Spruce-Tamarack Room of Davies Center.

Story Idea
Dr. Vanda Galen, professor of social work, will take 10 social work majors on an Appalachian Immersion trip to eastern Kentucky from May 23-June 3. The group will visit programs founded in the Progressive era, which still serve the people of the region. The students also will learn about issues related to Mountain Top removal. For details, contact Dr. Galen at 715-836-5366 or galenv@uwec.edu.

Story Idea
Seven accomplished alumni will be honored Saturday with several awards from the Alumni Association. The award winners will be honored during a luncheon Saturday, which will be held in Davies Center between commencement ceremonies. Among those being honored will be Sona Mehring, the founder and CEO of CaringBridge, a nonprofit website that connects families and friends in times of health crises. Mehring graduated from UW-Eau Claire in 1983 with a bachelor's degree in computer science and was a member of the Blugold women's basketball team. She worked as a software engineer prior to starting her own technology solution consulting company, Beacon Point Technologies. With the founding of CaringBridge in 1997 (a year before Google.com was created), Mehring launched one of the first social networks and the first website of its kind. More than 1 billion visits have been made to CaringBridge.org, with daily visitors coming from all 50 U.S. states and more than 225 countries. Mehring received a Certificate of Special Congressional Recognition and was named one of 2011's "Most Influential Women in Technology" by Fast Company and "Leading Woman for Change" by MSN.com. She is a member of Women Business Leaders of the U.S. Health Care Industry Foundation, the National Health Council and the National Health Marketing Leadership Roundtable. The media is invited to attend the luncheon to learn more about Mehring and the accomplishments of the other award winners. For details, contact John Bachmeier at 715-836-5189 or bachmejg@uwec.edu.

Calendar Notes
Students will take final exams Monday-Friday, May 16-20. Friday will mark the end of the 2011 spring semester.

Three-week summer session classes will begin Monday, May 23.

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