Press Release

Franklin University Honors 2020-2021 Pandemic Graduates with a Special Commencement Ceremony


Sherry Mercurio
Executive Director, Office of Community Relations
(614) 947-6581

Columbus, OH (September 16, 2021)

Franklin University, one of the leading educators of working adults, held a Special Commencement Ceremony on Sunday, Sept. 12, 2021 at 2:00 p.m. (EDT), to honor the University’s Spring 2020, Summer 2020, Fall 2020, and Spring 2021 graduates. The in-person commencement ceremony took place at The Greater Columbus Convention Center, Battelle Grand Hall, 400 N. High St. in downtown Columbus.

For nearly 120 years, Franklin University graduates have continued to meet the unique demands of being a student and working adult. Over the past year, this determination has been tested, as over 2,000 Franklin graduates persevered throughout the pandemic to complete their degree programs. The University was proud to properly commemorate its graduates with a special commencement ceremony that marked their resiliency throughout this time of adversity, as they officially walked across the stage to receive their well-earned degrees.

Special Commencement Speaker
Jack O. Cartner, Board Member and Franklin University alumnus ’63, delivered the formal commencement address.

Jack Cartner is a past chair of the Franklin University Board of Trustees and has held numerous committee chair and member positions throughout his time on the board. He currently serves as chair of the Infrastructure Committee and also sits on the Trusteeship Governance Committee. Cartner is president of Cambridge, Ohio-based MoTrim, Inc., which manufacturers boom-type hydraulic mowing machinery. He is president of Cartlan Corp. that constructs and owns commercial buildings in Cambridge. Cartner serves as the president of Southeast Publications Inc. and is publisher of the Journal Leader, a Caldwell, Ohio, newspaper, as well as several magazines distributed throughout southeastern Ohio. He has over 30 years of experience as a director of several national bank boards that were a part of the American Bank Corporation that eventually merged into Wesbanco Bank. Cartner served on executive committees, loan committees and numerous other bank committees. He is a U.S. Air Force veteran and a 1963 graduate of Franklin University. He holds 21 U.S. patents for mechanical and hydraulic machinery and has a farm in Guernsey county where he raises Angus cattle.

Graduate Student Speaker
Dr. Charlesey Bond also addressed the graduates this past Sunday. Dr. Bond has served 14 years within Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Department at Veterans Health Administration as a Kinesiotherapist. She holds a Doctorate in Healthcare Administration, Masters in Business Administration concentrated in Health Services Administration and a Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science with a specialty in Kinesiology. Dr. Bond continues to take pride in contributing an integral role within a multidisciplinary healthcare professional team providing conservative treatment specifically designed to restore independence and ultimately enhance veterans' quality of life. 

As a Professor at Eastern Gateway Community College, Dr. Bond is valued for building and coaching top performing students with a clear vision and servant leader mentality. She leverages a combination of her educational background, clinical experiences and business to guide, motivate, and educate students with an extraordinary academic e-learning experience within a unique perspective.

Upon graduation, Dr. Bond will continue her journey with The Department of Veterans Affairs as an organization that supports forward-looking research and education to expand the future capabilities in the Healthcare Administration sector. As a demonstrated industry healthcare leader in improving processes, and providing project oversight; she will continue to support and develop a wide range of implementing processes that impact healthcare service operations at The Department of Veterans Affairs campus wide.

About Franklin University

Accredited, nonprofit, and dedicated to educating adults since 1902, Franklin provides onsite 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, masters, and doctorate programs that enable adult learners to achieve their educational and professional goals. Through agreements with partner institutions, the University also offers international academic programs, including its top-ranked MBA.

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, the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation, and the Commission on Accreditation of Health Informatics and Information Management Education. The National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security have designated Franklin University as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education (CAE-CDE).

News Type

  • University