Richard Burr receiving award.

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Chowan University Celebrates 165th Commencement with US Senator Richard Burr

Chowan University Celebrates 165th Commencement with US Senator Richard Burr

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J. E. Barker - University Relations - May 15, 201

MURFREESBORO, NC – Chowan University celebrated its 165th Commencement Ceremony with a special guest, United States Senator for the State of North Carolina Richard Burr, on May 11th in the Helms Center.

“Graduation Day is more than the end of four years of college. It is recognition of how seriously you take education and your commitment to bettering your lives, but also the beginning of a new chapter,” stated Burr in his address to the graduating class. “Armed with your degrees, you will take the next step towards contributing to your communities and, ultimately, this country.”

Much of his address focused on overcoming obstacles to better oneself and one’s surroundings, with America’s first Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton as his leading example.

“Great Americans, like Hamilton, are not complacent or content with settling for the hands they have been dealt. They are constantly seeking new challenges, working to better themselves and those around them, and always contributing to a higher good,” explained the Senator. “Graduating today tells me that you know how to persevere and achieve something important that sets the stage for the next chapters in your lives. Never forget that tomorrow, your future, is always determined by you and the actions, work, and dedication you put into bettering yourselves and your communities.”

In addition to speaking the keynote address and receiving the “keys to the city” from Murfreesboro Mayor John Hinton, Sen. Richard Burr was awarded the honorary Doctor of Humane Letters for his exemplary service to the State of North Carolina from Chairman of the Trustees Frank Rose and Chowan President Dr. Chris White.

First elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1994, Burr served five terms in the House and is currently serving North Carolina in his second term in the U.S. Senate. He is a vocal advocate for our men and women in the military and their families, and for the growing population of veterans across North Carolina.

In the Senate, Burr serves as Ranking Member of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee where he works to improve the quality of health care and services our nation’s veterans receive. He also sits on the Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee; the Intelligence Committee; and the Finance Committee.

The son of a minister, Burr and his family moved to Winston-Salem, NC when he was a young child. After graduating from Wake Forest University, he began his career far from the halls of Congress by spending seventeen years in business with Carswell Distributing, a wholesale commercial products company.

He also serves as a Board Member of Brenner Children’s Hospital and on the West Point Board of Visitors. Richard and his wife, Brooke, have two sons.

Ranked the fastest growing university in North Carolina in terms of percentage growth for the last five years, Chowan University, a Christian liberal arts university founded in 1848, enrolls more than 1300 students each year and is located in the Historic Inner Banks community of Murfreesboro in Northeastern North Carolina. The university is in close proximity to the Outer Banks and Hampton Roads Virginia. Chowan’s park-like campus features 390 acres including Lake Vann, the beloved “Squirrel Park” and the original McDowell Columns Building, erected in 1851 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Accredited with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Chowan offers over 80 undergraduate academic programs among The School of Arts and Sciences, The School of Education and The School of Business, and offers Masters Degrees through the School of Graduate Studies. Several departments are also individually accredited, such as Teacher Education Program’s accreditation by NCDPI and NCATE, as well as the Music program’s institutional accreditation by NASM. Chowan offers 15 varsity sports, as well as co-ed cheerleading, with 11 programs in the CIAA conference and all with dual-affiliation in the NCAA D-II and NCCAA.

For more information about Chowan University, visit or call 1-888-4-CHOWAN.


Photo Caption: United States Senator Richard Burr was awarded the honorary Doctor of Humane Letters for his exemplary service to the State of North Carolina from Chowan University’s Chairman of the Trustees Frank Rose and President Dr. Chris White.


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