Press Release

Franklin Hosts 162st Commencement Ceremony


Sherry Mercurio
Executive Director, Office of Community Relations

Columbus, OH (August 8, 2019)

Franklin University, one of the leading educators of working adults, will hold its 162nd Commencement Ceremony on Friday, Sept. 6, 2019 at 7 p.m., during which the University’s newest degree candidates will receive their diplomas. This commencement ceremony will take place at The Greater Columbus Convention Center, Battelle Grand Hall, 400 N. High St. in downtown Columbus.

Commencement has always been a time of celebration. For Franklin University, the event marks a tremendous sense of achievement for students who completed their degrees often while juggling work, families and more. The University is proud to honor the achievements of this newest class of graduates and invites the community to join in the celebration.

Joining the Sept. 6 ceremony will be the newest group of graduates traveling from Muscat, Oman. These new graduates earned a Franklin's MBA offered through the Modern College of Business and Science (MCBS) in Oman. Through the program, Franklin’s MBA classes are taught in English by a combination of Franklin faculty who travel to Oman, as well as local faculty from MCBS and other institutions.

Receiving an honorary Doctor of Community Leadership degree will be Oyauma Garrison.  Oyauma serves as the President and Chief Executive Officer at A Kid Again, Inc, a nonprofit organization that provides ongoing monthly adventures for kids facing life threatening conditions. Prior to serving in his current role, Oyauma spent more than 20 years in the insurance industry, serving in a variety of leadership roles. 


Extremely active in his community, Oyauma has received numerous awards for leadership and community service, including recently being selected as a Columbus Business First Most Admired C-Suite leader honoree. He has been featured in several publications and in 2016 presented his first TedTalk (TedX) on Corporate Social Responsibility. Oyauma was named the inaugural 2015 Emerging Leader Award recipient for the United Way of Central Ohio, a United States of America Presidential 2014 Gold Standard Award recipient for Community Service, a 2011 Business First 40 under 40 honoree, and a 2007 National MBA of the Year award recipient.  Oyauma has been recognized twice by the Ohio General Assembly for his impact and leadership; and is a Lifetime Member of the National Black MBA Association and Prospanica (NSHMBA). 


Oyauma’s board activities include a recent election to a regional insurance company board, having served as chairman of the board for St. Vincent Family Centers, co-chair of the United Way Campaign cabinet corporate development committee, and having served a two-year term as co-chair of the United Way of Central Ohio Tocqueville society. He is also a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc and the St. Mark’s Lodge #7 – Prince Hall Masons. 


Oyauma earned his bachelor’s degree from Denison University and his MBA from Franklin University. A native of Baltimore, Maryland, Oyauma is the husband of Dr. Sacheen Garrison and the proud father of three children. 


Also addressing the graduates will be Kaja Drozdz. Kaja who will be graduating with an MBA, served as a graduate assistant for the Ross College of Business at Franklin University. She holds a master’s degree in law from UKSW in Warsaw, Poland and has worked for international law firms and companies in Poland, Germany, and the United States. Kaja has participated in the International Parliamentary Scholarship at the German Parliament, and is an active member of AIESEC International for which she organized projects and volunteered for the organization in Brazil and Indonesia. Kaja is from Walbrzych, Poland, and currently lives in Dublin, Ohio.


About Franklin University

Accredited, nonprofit and dedicated to educating adults since 1902, Franklin provides on-site course options at our Main Campus in downtown Columbus, Ohio, and is an innovator in providing personalized online education. The University offers applied in-demand undergraduate, master’s and doctorate programs that enable adult learners to achieve their educational and professional goals. The University also offers several academic programs internationally, including its top-ranked MBA, through agreements with partner institutions.

Franklin University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission and holds specialized accreditations for specific academic programs through the International Accreditation Council for Business Education, the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and the Commission on Accreditation of Health Informatics and Information Management Education. Franklin is only one of three schools in Ohio designated as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education (CAE-CDE) by the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security. 

News Type

  • University