Commencement ceremonies recognize 2010 class

The University of Georgia conferred degrees on about 5,170 undergraduate and graduate students at spring Commencement ceremonies May 8. An estimated 4,000 undergraduates were eligible to receive bachelor's degrees at the undergraduate ceremony in Sanford Stadium.

Alton Brown, who writes, produces, directs and stars in Good Eats, spoke at the undergraduate ceremony. In addition to being the first Peabody Award-winning host for the Food Network, Brown has written several books, including I'm Just Here for the Food, which won the 2003 James Beard Foundation Award for best cookbook in the reference category.

The student speaker for the undergraduate ceremony was Sarah Christian Haynes of Roswell, who received a bachelor of arts degrees in political science, international affairs and history. Haynes served as the president of the Student Alumni Council and External Affairs committee chair for the Student Government Association. A member of the Sigma Alpha Lambda, Phi Alpha Theta and Golden Key Honor societies, Haynes served as a G-Book project co-coordinator and executive director of the College Republicans. She currently serves as deputy political director for Secretary of State Brian Kemp.
Fifteen seniors who maintained perfect 4.0 grade point averages were recognized as First Honor Graduates.

About 1,170 candidates for master's, doctoral and specialist in education degrees were eligible to participate in the ceremony for graduate students.
The speaker for the ceremony for graduate students was Thomas Lauth, dean of the university's School of Public and International Affairs. Lauth has been dean of the school since it was established in 2001. He headed the political science department at UGA from 1988 to 2001. He was elected a Fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration in 2000 and is the recipient of a lifetime scholarly achievement award from the Association for Budgeting and Financial Management.