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Students march during the 2018 Commencement procession in front of Smith-Bonvillian Hall on TU’s Forbes Campus. This year’s ceremony will be in the same location on Saturday, May 11.


TU to hold Commencement ceremony on May 11

A record number of 454 students will graduate during Thomas University’s 64th Commencement on Saturday, May 11, on the lawn in front of Smith-Bonvillian Hall on TU’s Forbes Campus. Associate, bachelor’s, master’s and education specialist degrees will be presented.

Serving as this year’s Commencement speaker will be Jose Fernandez, founding partner of Florida Compass Group. He is recognized as one of Florida’s leading government regulatory experts. Fernandez leads the Infrastructure, Public Private Partnerships, and Energy Division where he has been a key advisor in securing $2 billion worth of infrastructure projects in the past five years.

Before establishing Florida Compass Group, Fernandez had a distinguished public service career. Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer named him city clerk and then director of general administration. Fernandez later served as the mayor’s chief of staff and senior adviser to the mayor for public policy and business development. In that role, Fernandez provided senior level guidance to the mayor on a variety of public policy matters and served as the voice for commerce on the mayor’s cabinet.

Fernandez has served on the board of directors of a number of public and private organizations, including Blue Beetle Energy, Orlando Regional Chamber of Commerce, Rollins College Alumni Association, Fifth Third Bank and New World Bank. He has also served as an adjunct professor teaching economic development at the University of Central Florida.

Fernandez holds a bachelor’s degree in Latin American and Caribbean Affairs from Rollins College, a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Central Florida, and is a graduate of the Kennedy School of Government’s Program for Senior Executives in State and Local Government at Harvard University.

TU’s Commencement ceremony will begin promptly at 8:30 a.m. on May 11. The procession of faculty, trustees and graduates will move into the area before the start time. Reserved seating requires a ticket provided to graduating students.

For more information about Commencement, visit

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