Kansas City Area December 2017 Commencement

Community of Christ AuditoriumSaturday, December 9, 10 a.m.
Community of Christ Auditorium
1001 W. Walnut, Independence, MO 64050

The Kansas City Area December 2017 Commencement ceremony will be held at the Community of Christ Auditorium, 1001 W. Walnut, Independence, Mo., on Saturday, Dec. 9, at 10 a.m.

Students are asked to arrive no later than 9 a.m. to register and prepare for the ceremony. There are no restrictions as to the number of guests you may invite. Please note that the ceremony usually lasts about two hours.

View a map of the Independence, Mo., area.

Graduates, family and friends should review the December 2017 Commencement Handbook  for a general schedule of events, information on the ceremony, caps and gowns, photographs, directions to the auditorium, live broadcast and other pertinent information.

For family/friends of graduates who are unable to attend Commencement, the ceremony will be live streamed for free via the University's video portal.

Michael CollinsThe keynote speaker for the commencement ceremony will be Michael Collins, president and chief executive officer of the Port Authority of Kansas City, Mo., and a member of the Park University Board of Trustees.

As president and CEO of Port KC, Collins oversees the strategic growth and vision of the quasi-governmental entity which manages a diversified portfolio of waterfront development along the Missouri River, including commercial real estate development finance, creating intermodal inland port facilities and enhancing river borne freight along the Missouri River.

Prior to joining Port KC, Collins served as vice president at Swope Community Enterprises. He also worked for former Missouri U.S. Sen. Christopher “Kit” Bond, first as a legislative correspondent and legislative assistant in Bond’s Washington, D.C., office before being promoted to senior adviser working on policies related to transportation, economic development, commerce, appropriations and labor. In addition, Collins led Bond’s Kansas City regional office.

Collins, who earned a Bachelor of Science degree in political science from Park in 2004, is the immediate past chair of Park’s Board of Trustees after having served as chair from 2015-17. He is in the midst of his second three-year term on the Board. He also earned a Master of Business Administration degree from Rockhurst University and completed executive education at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. Along with Park’s Board of Trustees, Collins is on the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City’s Economic Advisory Council. He has served on boards for Truman Medical Centers, the Kansas City Streetcar Authority, KC SmartPort, Engage Cuba Advisory Board and the Urban Land Institute-Kansas City Advisory Council.