Illinois College celebrates 190th Commencement


Approximately 250 degrees will be awarded to members of the Class of 2024. Commencement exercises are scheduled to take place in Bruner Fitness and Recreation Center at 1 p.m.

On Sunday, May 12, Illinois College celebrates its 190th commencement. Approximately 250 degrees will be awarded to members of the Class of 2024. Commencement exercises are scheduled to take place in the Bruner Fitness and Recreation Center at 1 p.m. The ceremony will be available via livestream.

Trenton Terry ’24, this year’s senior class representative, will speak during the ceremony. During his time on campus, Terry double majored in biology and secondary education. He was a member of Pi Pi Rho literary society, Beta Beta Beta Biological Honor Society, and served as a student marshall. He is currently student teaching at Beardstown High School. Upon graduation, Terry will work as a secondary science teacher at Kewanee High School. 

During the commencement ceremony, Illinois College will recognize Del Dunham ’72 and Gary R. Haynes ’74, M.D., Ph.D. with Doctor of Humane Letters honoris causa degrees on the occasion of their retirement from the Illinois College Board of Trustees.

A Winchester, Illinois, native, Dunham’s successful career focused on financial information systems. Most recently, he served as the senior technology management consultant with Carlisle and Gallagher, and prior to this position was senior vice president of Fidelity Investment Systems. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree in math and physics from Illinois College in 1972, a Master of Science degree from Northern Illinois University, and an MBA from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas.

Recognized by the Alumni Association in 2009 with the Distinguished Service Award, Dunham played a transformational role in the growth of Illinois College during his 20 years of service to the board. He will retire in June 2024 after leading Inspiring Achievement: The Campaign for Illinois College to a successful conclusion in 2022 as Campaign Chair, raising over $54 million. He has chaired and served on various committees during his tenure and currently serves on two committees: Finance & Audit and Development, along with the Capital Improvements Working Group. 

Illinois College is grateful to Del and Lisa Dunham for their vision to renovate the auditorium in Crispin Hall which was renamed the Del ’72 and Lisa Dunham Auditorium in 2019 in honor of a lead gift made by the family to the College. They also established an endowment to support STEM research in honor of Emeritus Professors G. Jack Mann and Fred Pilcher, and are strong supporters of the IC Fund. The Dunhams are Lifetime and Annual Members of the Illinois College Society as Diamond-level donors and Julian Monson Sturtevant Society members.  

Haynes, a native of Springfield, Illinois, is the Merryl and Sam Israel Chair in Anesthesiology and Professor of Anesthesiology at Tulane University School of Medicine in New Orleans, Louisiana. He has held clinical and academic positions at the Saint Louis University School of Medicine and the Medical University of South Carolina. Dr. Haynes received his Bachelor of Science degree from Illinois College in 1974, a Master of Science degree from University of Cincinnati, and an M.D. and Ph.D. from Case Western Reserve University. He has extensive experience in complex clinical and medical organizational problems and is widely published in medical journals. 

Dr. Haynes retired from the Board of Trustees in 2023 after a 12-year term that included serving as the Chair of the Committee on Academics and Student Success and Vice Chair of the Inspiring Achievement Campaign. He has also served on the Development and Enrollment Committees and currently serves as an Emeritus Trustee on the Risk Management Working Group.

Along with his wife, Debra Kurtock Haynes ’76, Dr. Haynes has supported the College’s liberal arts education in important ways, including a summer program on campus focusing on the preparation of students who plan to attend medical school. Dr. and Mrs. Haynes are Lifetime and Annual Members of the Illinois College Society. 

The College will host several additional events during commencement weekend. The 92nd annual Phi Beta Kappa installation ceremony for new members will take place at 6 p.m. on Thursday, May 9, in Sibert Theatre in McGaw Fine Arts Center. Phi Beta Kappa is the nation’s oldest and most distinguished academic honor society. The Nurse Pinning Ceremony will also take place in Sibert Theatre the following day, Friday, May 10, at 4 p.m.

The popular Osage Orange Festival and Senior Celebration is scheduled for Saturday, May 13, from 5 to 7:30 p.m. on the lawn at the corner of Mound Road and Lincoln Avenue. Admission is free and the event is open to the public. The evening will feature face painting, inflatables, games and more. A variety of the area’s favorite food trucks including Twyfords BBQ, Leo’s on Wheels and Lazy Laker will provide festive food and drink options, including beer and wine, for purchase.

The Baccalaureate Service will be held at 10 a.m. Sunday in Rammelkamp Chapel. The service will feature the IC music department, speakers and readings. Special events for graduates and their families will be held after the Baccalaureate and after Commencement that day.

For more information about Commencement Weekend or to RSVP for events, visit the 2024 Commencement schedule.

About Illinois College

Founded in 1829, Illinois College is a residential liberal arts college fostering academic excellence rooted in opportunities for experiential learning while preparing students for lifelong success. The college is located in Jacksonville, Illinois. With an enrollment of more than 1,000 students, the college offers over 50 undergraduate programs. In 1932, the society of Phi Beta Kappa established a chapter at Illinois College, and it remains one of only 11 in the state.

Illinois College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association.

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Emily Titsworth '19, Writer
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