Sweet Briar College holds 108th commencement ceremony Saturday morning

Photo credit: Jackson Evans

SWEET BRIAR, Va. (WSET) - Early Saturday morning, graduates gathered for the commencement exercises at Sweet Briar College.

Saturday's graduation marked the 108th commencement — and second since the College remained open.

It was predicted to be a rainy ceremony, but thankfully, the showers stayed away.

“At Sweet Briar College, it never rains on commencement, right?” retiring President Philip Stone said, adding the College had reason to celebrate not just being open, but completing another successful year: “The miracles continue at Sweet Briar College.”

Kathryn Thornton, a former NASA astronaut, gave the commencement address.

“For our honored graduates today, this is the starting point of your slice of history,” she said. “Over your lifetime, you will have to deal with the exponentially increasing pace of new technologies, each with its own potentials, limitations and dangers.

“My plea to you is that throughout your careers, you become and remain actively involved in shaping policies regarding research and uses of new technology, in your profession, through your professional societies, and as a participant in the democratic process of this country. If you don’t, someone far less informed will. You know that science matters. Facts matter. Knowledge matters. Logic, reasoning and respect for those who hold a different point of view all matter. You learned these things here at Sweet Briar,” Thornton said.

Sweet Briar's new president, Meredith Woo, starts May 15.

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