2 Framingham Students Graduate From Western New England University

SPRINGFIELD – Western New England University conferred degrees to nearly 400 graduate students receiving masters, law, and doctorate degrees from its Colleges of Arts and Sciences, Business, Engineering, Pharmacy, and School of Law on May 21.

The graduating class hailed from 30 states: Alaska, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Washington, DC, and Wisconsin. Graduates were also from the U.S. Virgin Islands China, France, and Iceland.

Graduates with ties to Framingham were:

  • Julia E. Bernas graduated with a Doctor of Pharmacy degree and a Master of Business Administration.
  • Daniel C. Reilly graduated with a Juris Doctor.
 In his remarks, President Anthony S. Caprio challenged the graduates to use their educations for positivity: “You must choose to make a difference. You have responsibility for yourself,” he said as he congratulated the graduates in joining the more the 45,400 alumni of the University. “You must create light around you and not darkness. With this attitude, you will be the leader in your family, your community, your place of work, and in your country.”

Much of the graduate ceremony’s inspirational messaging came from keynote, Dr. James Withers, a physician, educator, innovator, and 2015 Top 10 CNN Hero. In 1992, Dr. Withers took to the streets of Pittsburgh dressed as a homeless person to make nightly “house calls” to the street dwellers. A powerful video of his story screened during the Graduate Ceremony which chronicled his journey from that day to the founding of Operation Safety Net, the first full-time, comprehensive medical service of its kind. Dr. Withers encouraged the graduates to aspire to “be the people we want to be in our professions.”


Western New England University is a private, independent, coeducational institution founded in 1919. Located on an attractive 215-acre suburban campus in Springfield, Massachusetts, Western New England serves 3,830 students, including 2,580 full-time undergraduate students. Undergraduate, graduate, and professional programs are offered through Colleges of Arts and Sciences, Business, Engineering, Pharmacy, and the School of Law.

Framingham Source Editor Susan Petroni

Susan Petroni Framingham Source Editor Email: editor@FraminghamSource.com Phone: 508-315-7176

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