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Congratulations Class of 2019


Northwood University’s students cross the stage this weekend at our spring commencement ceremonies, some turning the page on their educational journeys and others preparing for the next step at graduate school or beyond. Commencement is a celebration of accomplishments as much as it is the celebration of a new chapter. This year, we recognize the hard work of 690 graduates from Northwood’s programs across the system: 273 from our traditional undergraduate program, 116 from the DeVos Graduate School of Management, and 301 graduates of our Adult Degree Programs.

For some, this dream was far more than four years in the making. Northwood University’s Adult Degree Program students work hard to balance careers, families and the pursuit of their education. We know these students have perseverance and determination, and commencement is so much sweeter for them because of the obstacles they overcome in order to earn their degree.

We are pleased to announce our two Gallery of Distinction Honorary Doctorates and Commencement Speakers, Richard B. Guirlinger and John Venhuizen.

Richard B. Guirlinger is a 35-year veteran of the Automotive Aftermarket Industry. He serves as the President of Bourke Services, LLC, and Partner of Schwartz Advisors, LLC. He received a Master of Business Administration degree from Northwood in 2011 and a Bachelor of Science degree with concentrations in Accounting, Business Management, and Business Communications from Western Michigan University in 1976.

John Venhuizen is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Ace Hardware Corporation, the largest retailer-owned hardware cooperative and hardline distributor in the world. Since joining the company in 1992, he has held several leadership positions overseeing marketing, business development, operations, strategy, supply chain, IT and Ace International Holdings. John earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Trinity College in 1992. He serves on several boards, including the Mark Morton Memorial Foundation, Ace International Holdings, and Ace Retail Holdings.

For friends and families who may not be able to make the ceremonies in person, both will be live-streamed and recorded. You can view the morning undergraduate and accelerated MBA students by viewing this link, and the afternoon ceremony for ADP and our graduate students by viewing this link.

I welcome our global viewing audience to share in the celebration of our graduates, and I look forward to the many great feats our graduates will accomplish as new Northwood University alumni.

Congratulations graduates!

Have a great weekend!


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