Wednesday, 22 April 2015 16:20

Three Ceremonies, Speakers for Oswego's 154th Commencement

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Margaret A. Focarino Margaret A. Focarino Submitted photo

Speakers at SUNY Oswego's three 154th Commencement ceremonies Saturday, May 16, will be the U.S. commissioner for patents, a leader in technology literacy and the founding dean of the college's newest school.

At the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences ceremony at 9 a.m., Margaret A. Focarino, commissioner for patents in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, will speak. Yvonne Spicer, a vice president of the National Center for Technological Literacy, will speak at the School of Education ceremony at 1 p.m. Fritz Messere, dean of the School of Communication, Media and the Arts, will speak at the combined ceremony for his school and the School of Business at 4 p.m.

Before delivering her address, Focarino will receive an honorary doctor of science degree from the State University of New York.

Focarino was appointed commissioner for patents in 2012, leading an organization she joined after graduating from SUNY Oswego with a degree in physics in 1977. While deputy commissioner, she received the U.S. Department of Commerce Silver Medal for leadership in 2010.

She received American University's School of Public Affairs Roger W. Jones Award for Executive Leadership in 2010 and was named to Managing Intellectual Property's 2012 list of the "most influential people" in the world of intellectual property. In 2013, the Partnership for Public Service named her a finalist for the Service to America Medal in the category of management excellence.

SpicerSpicer is vice president of advocacy and educational partnerships at the National Center for Technological Literacy based at Boston's Museum of Science. She is a national and international speaker and advocate for pre-college science, technology, engineering and math education.

Mass High Tech: The Journal of New England Technology honored her as one of 10 "Women to Watch." She directs the Gateway Project, which originated in Massachusetts and is being replicated across the United States as a model to build leadership capacity for technological literacy. She earned her doctorate at the University of Massachusetts at Boston and her bachelor's and master's degrees from Oswego.

MessereFormerly chair of Oswego's communication studies department, Messere was named founding dean of the School of Communication, Media and the Arts in 2010. He is an expert on broadcasting regulation and telecommunications. He received his bachelor's and master's degrees from Oswego and did post-graduate work at Cornell University.

He is the co-author of five books on electronic media and communication, including "Broadcasting, Cable, the Internet and Beyond." He has served as external assistant to FCC Commissioner Mimi Wayforth Dawson, as senior fellow of the Annenberg Washington Program in Communication Policy, and on the Rural Policy Research Institute's National Experts Panel on Telecommunications.

Admission to commencement is by ticket, with six allotted to each graduate. The ceremonies will also be shown live and free on Time Warner Cable channel 96 in Oswego and streamed online at

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