University of South Alabama, Office of Public Relations
April 28, 2011
Contact: Jennifer Z. Ekman, USA Public Relations, (251) 460-6360

U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions to Address
USA Spring Commencement

Ceremony set for 2 p.m. at Mitchell Center
U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions  
U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions

U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions will give the University of South Alabama’s Spring 2011 Commencement address on Saturday, May 14 at 2 p.m., at the USA Mitchell Center.

The ceremony marks the beginning for 1,373 graduates, bringing the total degrees awarded for the academic year to 2,846. USA has awarded 70,042 degrees throughout its history.

At the Spring Commencement ceremony, USA will award 969 bachelor’s degrees, 259 master’s degrees, 69 doctor of medicine degrees, 11 educational specialists and 65 doctorate degrees.

Additionally, USA and the Mobile County Public School System will partner again this year to provide live streaming of the University’s Spring Commencement. The live coverage begins May 14 at 2 p.m., CDST, on the University's Web site at Recorded video of the event will be available online at the same address following the live Web cast.

Video streaming of all MCPSS schools to hold graduation inside the USA Mitchell Center may be seen at A high school graduation schedule is available on the same Web site. Only Citronelle High School's graduation will not be video streamed because it is not held inside the Mitchell Center.

U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions: A Commitment to Public Service
Sessions, the son of a country store owner, grew up in Hybart, Ala. After attending high school in Camden, Sessions headed to Huntingdon College and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1969. He received a Juris Doctorate degree from the University of Alabama in 1973. Sessions served in the U.S. Army Reserve from 1973 to 1986, ultimately attaining the rank of Captain.

Sessions’ interest in the law led to a distinguished legal career. Following a two-year stint as an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Alabama, he was nominated by President Ronald Reagan in 1981 and confirmed by the Senate to serve as the U.S. Attorney for Alabama’s Southern District, a position he held for 12 years. Sessions was elected as Alabama’s Attorney General in 1994. He served as the state’s chief legal officer until 1996, when he was elected to the U.S. Senate. As a U.S. Senator, Sen. Sessions has focused his energies on maintaining a strong military, upholding the rule of law, limiting the role of government, and providing tax relief to stimulate economic growth and empower Americans to keep more of their hard-earned money.

Sen. Sessions was selected to serve as the Ranking Member on the Senate Budget Committee, where his goals are restraining the growth of federal spending and making permanent tax cuts that benefit American families. As a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Sen. Sessions is a leading advocate in confirming federal judges who follow the will of the law and will not legislate from the bench. He serves as ranking member of the Judiciary Administrative Oversight and the Courts Subcommittee.

As a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Sen. Sessions is a strong advocate for America’s military. Recently, Sen. Sessions was appointed to the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee.

Sen. Sessions can point to many legislative victories, including:

  • increased payments to families of fallen soldiers;
  • equitable Medicare Prescription Drug benefits for rural citizens;
  • making interest earned on tuition savings and prepaid tuition plans tax free;
  • improving health care for Alabamians living with HIV/AIDS;
  • securing funds for state and local crime labs;
  • opening land in the Gulf of Mexico to new energy explorations;
  • adding additional Alabama land to the National Wildlife Refuge system; and,
  • the first federal funding for the USA Center for Strategic Health Innovations.

While serving in the U.S. Senate, Sen. Sessions has received numerous awards for his outstanding record on business, economic, military and environmental issues.

In 2008, the people of Alabama overwhelmingly voted to return Sen. Sessions to the Senate for a third term.

Sen. Sessions and his wife, Mary, have three children and five grandchildren.

Parking and Shuttle Info:
For graduating students, there will be reserved parking in the parking lot located behind the Mitchell College of Business on Jaguar Drive. Admittance to the Physical Education Building is limited to graduating students only.

Handicapped parking will be limited but is available for students, family and friends. Entrance to this parking lot will be from Old Shell Road only (behind the Mitchell Center). Proper tags must be visible for access to this lot.

Guests entering at Stadium Drive should park in the Gamma/ Engineering Parking Lot.

Parking signs are posted throughout the campus and shuttle service is available if you park in the posted areas. Directional parking signs will be displayed.

The shuttle service will run from noon - 6 p.m. It will deliver guests to the Mitchell Center.

Shuttle pickup and drop-off points are University Commons, Gamma Dorm parking lot, Humanities Building parking lot, Administration parking lot, Jaguar Drive, and the parking lot east of the Computer Science Building.


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