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MEDIA CONTACT: Kristine M. Gobbo
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Lisa Metcalf

FAU to Host Inauguration of Dr. Mary Jane Saunders

BOCA RATON, FL (October 13, 2010) – Florida Atlantic University will host the inauguration installation ceremony of  Dr. Mary Jane Saunders, FAU’s sixth president, on Friday, October 29 at 10 a.m. in the Carole and Barry Kaye Auditorium, FAU’s Student Union, 777 Glades Road, Boca Raton campus.  The installation ceremony is part of a weeklong series of events that begin on Sunday, October 24 and conclude on Saturday, October 30. The inaugural celebration intertwines with the university’s Homecoming festivities. 
            “It is such a privilege to be the sixth president of Florida Atlantic University,” said Saunders. “I continue my commitment to support students in helping them achieve academic success, to work together with faculty and staff in the pursuit of new goals and to engage the community as we take FAU to the next level of excellence.”
            Themed Making Waves : Celebrating and Cultivating Discovery, Diversity and Distinction, the inauguration is designed to introduce the president to the University’s constituents and provide a platform for the expression of the president’s vision for the future of FAU. It also is an opportunity for the entire university community to welcome her. The University’s Board of Trustees determined the scope and timing of the inauguration, and initiated the planning process by appointing a committee to oversee all aspects of the event, which was led by the co-chairs of the inauguration committee, BOT Member Sherry Plymale and Dr. Mary Ann Gosser-Esquil ín , professor in FAU’s department of languages, linguistics and comparative literature
          “The inauguration installation ceremony marks an important day in the history of FAU, as we celebrate Dr. Mary Jane Saunders as the University’s sixth president,” said Plymale. “This significant university ritual represents the honor of tradition and leadership, and the events surrounding it really highlight the strengths and diversity of FAU.”
            Saunders was named FAU’s sixth president by unanimous vote of the FAU Board of Trustees on March 3. She began her term of service on June 7, 2010.  Prior to her arrival at FAU, Saunders was provost and senior vice president for academic affairs at Cleveland State University, where she also was founding dean of the College of Science, director of the Biomedical and Health Institute, and a professor in the department of biological, geological and environmental sciences.  Her professional background also includes academic appointments at the National Science Foundation, the University of South Florida, Louisiana State University and the University of Georgia. She is an award-winning cell biology researcher, educator and academic leader who is known nationally for her commitment to public higher education.  A native of Worcester, Massachusetts, Saunders holds a B.S. in biology from Boston University and both an M.S. and a Ph.D. in botany from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.   Saunders is married to Dr. George Newkome, a distinguished polymer science and chemistry research professor.
            For more information on FAU’s inaugural activities and a listing of events, visit .


  About Florida Atlantic University:

Florida Atlantic University opened its doors in 1964 as the fifth public university in Florida. Today, the University serves more than 28,000 undergraduate and graduate students on seven campuses and sites. Building on its rich tradition as a teaching university, with a world-class faculty, FAU hosts 10 colleges: the Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts & Letters, the College of Business, the College for Design and Social Inquiry, the College of  Education, the College of  Engineering & Computer Science, the Graduate College, the Harriet L. Wilkes Honors College, the Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine, the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing and the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science. For more information, visit .

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