Eastern University Spring Commencement Saturday, May 11

St. Davids, PA, March 11, 2013: Eastern University will hold its two Spring Commencement ceremonies on Saturday, May 11, on the campus at 1300 Eagle Road in St. Davids, PA. The morning Commencement at 10 a.m. will be held for students in the College of Arts and Sciences and Esperanza College. The afternoon Commencement at 2:30 p.m. will be held for students in the Campolo College of Graduate and Professional Studies.

Both ceremonies will take place outside on the Auxiliary Field, to the left of Olson Field. In the case of severe weather, the ceremonies will be moved inside to the Gymnasium. For severe weather information the day of Commencement, check this Web site or call 610.341.5800.

The speaker for both ceremonies is Rev. Lauran Dale Bethell. Lauran Bethell, M.Div, D.D., LhD. has been ministering to and advocating for exploited and abused women for more than two decades. A missionary with International Ministries of American Baptist Churches/USA since 1985, she is now (since 2001) an International Consultant dealing with the issues of prostitution, trafficking, and abuse. As the Director of the New Life Center in Chiang Mai, Thailand (1987), Rev. Bethell pioneered projects that addressed child prostitution and trafficking. The New Life Center has received international recognition and awards for its work, including an award from the Prime Minister of Thailand.

Rev. Bethell directed the first International Consultation on Ministry with Women in Prostitution in 2004, bringing together the leaders of faith-based organizations from 25 countries. Similar conferences were held in 2006 and 2008. Rev. Bethell received the Human Rights Award of the Baptist World Alliance in 2005. She initiated Project Hope in Prague, working with Bulgarian Roma women. Rev. Bethell has testified before the U.S. Congress as they drafted anti-trafficking legislation.

She earned a B.A. from the University of Redlands, CA, and taught elementary school in California and at the Hong Kong International School. She completed a Master's of Divinity from the American Baptist Seminary of the West, Berkeley, CA, from which she was later awarded a Doctor of Divinity for her pioneering work with women. She was also honored with a Doctor of Humane Letters from Palmer Seminary of Eastern University.

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