Ramsey was one of several speakers to address the students. They also heard from this year’s Trustees Award winner and business professor Van Clouse, as well as from their peers, Tara Schapmire, social work, at the morning ceremony, and Deep Aggarwal, business, at the afternoon event.

“Your university is proud of you — we celebrate your achievement,” Ramsey said.

“In the years ahead you will attain many professional and personal successes, and you will discover your own unique way to serve our society and to ‘make it happen’,” he said, playing on UofL’s slogan, “It’s Happening Here.”

An estimated 2,734 students have completed all requirements to graduate this semester.

Also during the afternoon commencement ceremony, Brett Trager Kusman, a UofL junior, accepted honorary doctoral degrees of public service on behalf of his grandparents, Bernard Trager, who died earlier this year, and Jean Trager, who was unable to attend.

“The most prestigious way a university can honor individuals who have contributed to the enhancement and enrichment of society is by the awarding of an honorary degree,” Ramsey explained.

The degrees honored the Tragers’ service to the community, state and university. Bernard, chairman and founder of Republic Bancorp, served as chair of UofL’s Board of Overseers and as a member for nearly three decades.