Cover Photo Image
Commencement Schedule
University Ceremony Information

Friday, May 4, 2018

3:00 p.m.

Bridgeforth Stadium

Doors will open at 1:00 p.m.





Presentation of Candidates


University Ceremony Speaker

Mark J. Warner

Dr. Warner is the Senior Vice President for Student Affairs at James Madison University. He has worked at James Madison University for thirty-seven years.

He earned his Doctorate from the University of Virginia, and also has Educational Specialist, Master’s and Bachelor’s degrees from James Madison University.

He is a tenured, full-professor and has taught a leadership class for over twenty-five years. In 1998, Dr. Warner was the recipient of the “James Madison Distinguished Teaching Award”.

Dr. Warner co-created and co-facilitates IMPACT3, an executive leadership development program for professionals, which has garnered international attention.

Dr. Warner has been a leadership consultant and speaker in the business, government, education and faith sectors. Currently, his major focus is Servant Leadership. His engagements number in the hundreds, and have included organizations such as Merck Pharmaceuticals, National Management Association, U.S. Marshals,  American College Personnel Association, the FBI Academy, and the International Leadership Association. Dr. Warner was also a TEDx Talk speaker.

He has been a speaker internationally in countries such as Belgium, China, Canada, the Czech Republic, and Spain. Also, he has taught courses in Honduras, Italy and Austria.

Dr. Warner co-authored the book, Inspiring Leadership: It’s Not About the Power. He also wrote the book, The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Enhancing Self-Esteem. He has written extensively in the fields of leadership, business and wellness promotion.

Dr. Warner has served on many boards including: Rockingham Memorial Hospital, United Way, Community Foundation, Keister Elementary Parent Teacher Organization, Blue Ridge Theatre Festival, Criminal Justice Board, American Heart Association and MS Dinner of Champions.

Graduate School Ceremony Speaker

Lennis Echterling

Lennis Echterling, Ph.D., is a Professor of Counseling at James Madison University.

He has more than 30 years of experience in teaching graduate students and in promoting resilience. He has served as an intervener, consultant, and trainer following many catastrophic events, including interpersonal violence, sexual assaults, hurricanes, tornadoes, the tsunami in India, the 9/11 attacks at the Pentagon, the shootings at Virginia Tech, and landmine explosions in the Middle East.  His books include "Crisis Intervention: Building Resilience in Troubled Times" and “Thriving.”  

His awards include James Madison University’s Distinguished Faculty Award, Virginia Counselors Association’s Humanitarian Award, Virginia’s Outstanding Faculty Award, Virginia Counselors Career Service Award, and the national Counseling Vision and Innovation Award.


Inclement Weather Procedure
In the case of inclement weather, if weather conditions appear life threatening (lightning, tornado warnings, etc.), the university’s inclement weather plan will be put in place. This will be posted on the JMU website and announced on the radio at AM 1610.
JMU’s public safety department makes this decision and will inform students if a decision has been made through our JMU Emergency Alert System.
All ceremonies will otherwise be held in rain or shine.
The University Ceremony that is to be held on Friday, will be canceled or postponed if the inclement weather plan is enacted. A decision will be made by 12:30 p.m. that day.
If inclement weather is called for Saturday; the decision will be made by 7:00 a.m. The individual college ceremonies will be held later in the day or moved to indoor venues and times will change. The Commencement Home Page will have updated information should this issue occur. 

Back to Top