by Ward Mullens, Published December 15, 2010
YPSILANTI - More than 1,800 students are eligible to participate in Eastern Michigan University's Commencement ceremony Sunday, Dec. 19, at 2 p.m. at the Convocation Center (799 N. Hewitt Rd.).
Doors will open 90 minutes before the ceremony. Tickets are limited to graduates and their families and friends. Parking is free.
Approximately 1,231 undergraduates and 557 graduate students (including 14 doctoral candidates) are eligible to participate in the event.
Eastern Michigan President Susan Martin will preside over the ceremonies. Mahmud Rahman, professor of finance, will serve as the grand marshal. The EMU Symphonic Band, conducted by Amy Knopps, will provide the music. The Army ROTC will provide the Color Guard.
Carol Goss, president and chief executive officer of the Skillman Foundation, will be the guest speaker.
The Skillman Foundation is a private, independent foundation whose mission is to improve the lives of children in metropolitan Detroit by improving their homes, schools and neighborhoods. This Foundation has assets of $600 million and manages an annual grants budget of $30 million.
Goss has been involved in philanthropy for 20 years. Prior to joining the Skillman Foundation as senior program officer in 1998, Goss served as program officer at The Stuart Foundation in San Francisco, California, and as program director at the W.K. Kellogg Foundation in Battle Creek, Michigan.
Her professional career also includes experience in the human services field as a social worker, social work supervisor and agency administrator with the Detroit Department of Public Welfare, Oakland County Family and Children's Services, and The Children's Home Society in Oakland, Calif.
In 2008, Goss received the City Mission Champion for Children award and was selected as the Eleanor Josaitis "Unsung Hero" recipient as part of the Shining Light Awards sponsored by the Detroit Free Press and Metropolitan Affairs Coalition. She also was selected as one of 25 women to be featured in the Charles H. Wright Museum's newest exhibit, "Women of a New Tribe." In 2007, Goss was named the James A. Joseph Lecturer by the Association of Black Foundation Executives and has been cited by Crain's Detroit Business as one of Southeast Michigan's Most Influential Women, an honor bestowed just once every five years to the region's most dynamic and powerful women.
Goss grew up in Detroit and, during her teenage years, did volunteer work for the YWCA. Her community service convinced her that she wanted to become a social worker and help people in need. She graduated from Detroit's Chadsey High School before heading to the University of Michigan, where she received two degrees. Goss holds both a bachelor's degree in sociology (1969) and a MSW (1972).