UHV graduates to celebrate Saturday at two commencement ceremonies

University of Houston-Victoria students get ready to graduate during one of the spring 2013 commencement ceremonies at Faith Family Church.

Close to 350 University of Houston-Victoria students are expected to participate in two commencement ceremonies on Saturday and listen to a successful alumnus tell them about key virtues in life and give them examples from his own experiences.

Vic Morgan

“Saturday marks a special day for our graduating students and their families and friends,” UHV Interim President Vic Morgan said. “UHV faculty and staff look forward to helping them celebrate this occasion as they look to the future and what a higher education will bring to their lives.”

The ceremonies will take place at Faith Family Church, 2002 E. Mockingbird Lane, the largest indoor facility available in Victoria. A 9 a.m. ceremony will be for students graduating from the schools of Arts & Sciences and Education & Human Development. A 1 p.m. ceremony will be for those graduating from the schools of Business Administration and Nursing.

Victoria Mayor Paul Polasek will deliver the keynote address at both ceremonies. Polasek graduated from UHV in 1990 and was elected mayor in May 2013 after seven years of serving on the Victoria City Council.

Paul Polasek

Polasek also is a partner in Aloe Software Group, a Victoria company that designs software for more than 100 Texas school districts. He was chosen as UHV’s Alumni of the Year in November during the 2012-2013 President’s Annual Report & Excellence Awards event. His wife, Michelle, graduated in 1989 from UHV with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics.

The Honorable Welcome Wilson Jr., secretary of the UH System Board of Regents, will bring greetings on behalf of the board at the morning commencement ceremony, while Regent Roger Welder will bring greetings in the afternoon.

UHV Faculty Senate President Ronald Salazar will serve as the grand marshal of both ceremonies. The deans of UHV’s four schools will award students diplomas, and Morgan will confer the degrees. Outstanding students for the spring semester also will be recognized, along with faculty members receiving awards for excellence in teaching, research and service.

The UHV School of Nursing also will have a pinning ceremony for its graduates at 3 p.m. Saturday at Faith Family Church. Thirty-seven students graduating from the Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing program and 15 from the Master of Science in Nursing program will receive special pins.

The speaker for the pinning ceremony will be Sammie Drehr, chief nursing officer of DeTar Healthcare System in Victoria. She has worked at DeTar since 1992, starting as the associate director of nursing and advancing to her current position in 2008.

For more information about UHV commencement, contact special events coordinator Nancy Gresham at 361-570-4351 or

The University of Houston-Victoria, located in the heart of the Coastal Bend region since 1973 in Victoria, Texas, offers courses leading to more than 80 academic programs in the schools of Arts & Sciences; Business Administration; and Education, Health Professions & Human Development. UHV provides face-to-face classes at its Victoria campus, as well as an instructional site in Katy, Texas, and online classes that students can take from anywhere. UHV supports the American Association of State Colleges and Universities Opportunities for All initiative to increase awareness about state colleges and universities and the important role they have in providing a high-quality and accessible education to an increasingly diverse student population, as well as contributing to regional and state economic development.

Paula Cobler