Snapshots: Mid-Year Grads Celebrate at December Toast 2017

Dec. 21, 2017

Snapshots: Mid-Year Grads Celebrate at December Toast 2017
Ellie Wharton delivers the keynote address at December Toast 2017.

On Dec. 15 Webster University held its fifth December Toast, a celebration with mid-year graduates and their families. More than 150 graduates attended in the Community Music School building with family guests as well as faculty, staff and administrative leaders.

The annual event honors graduates who finish their programs in the summer, fall or December, instead of the more traditional May finish.

Ellie Wharton, a broadcaster, marketer and founder of Radio 63119, was the keynote speaker. Graduates also heard from President Beth Stroble and Provost Julian Schuster. The new alumni were welcomed to the Alumni Association -- and encouraged to identify an alumni event to attend some time in the next three months -- by alumnus Tyler Holman, who is vice president of the Alumni Association.

Afterward, attendees moved from the Community Music School to the East Academic Building for a reception with live music and refreshments.

Scenes from December Toast 2017
Mid-year graduates and families celebrated in the Community Music School before adjourning to a reception in the Edward Jones Commons of the East Academic Building.

Wharton's address was delivered mostly in verse. An excerpt (full text copyright Cre8tive Writes, LLC) appears here:

This ending is just a beginning –
A lofty goal to achieve.
But there’s so much more – your whole future’s in store
For the taking, if you just believe.

Embarking upon this new chapter –
The world and its future are yours.
Life can flit by in the blink of an eye,
Take advantage of all open doors.

Look to your left, then look to your right.
The potential is without range.
Let nothing impede you. Know that we need you
In these times of turbulent change.

Stay confident in your resolve,
Maintain dignity, ethics, and grace.
Know how to convey all that you want to say,
One-on-one, eye-to-eye, face-to-face.

Video, More Photos

Watch a replay of the live stream here. The event begins around the 29:00 mark of the video. Wharton's remarks begin at the 50:00 mark.

See more photos in the December Toast 2017 album on Facebook here.

tags:  academics, alumni, home page, december toast, commencement, webster life, webster today,