Voorhees prepares for its 2017 commencement ceremony

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Voorhees prepares for its 2017 commencement ceremony

April 21, 2017

Voorhees College will hold its 120th Commencement Ceremony on Saturday, May 6 at 11 a.m. in the Leonard E. Dawson Center. The keynote speaker will be actress, dancer, and director Jasmine Guy.

A frequent motivational public speaker, she shares her story openly with those who may benefit from her trials and triumphs.  She has traveled throughout the U.S. and appeared at more than 100 speaking engagements, addressing diverse audiences at colleges, universities, conventions, corporations, affinity groups, churches, high schools, and countless charitable and fundraising events. Guy’s ongoing desire to blend balance and discipline with ambition and service continues to fuel her passion for the arts.

After years on Broadway and touring the globe, Guy landed the role as Whitley Gilbert on a “Different World,” a spinoff of “The Cosby Show.” For her role as “Whitley,” she won six consecutive NAACP Image Awards.

Guy has also worked with these great performers and directors in these films and mini-series:  Spike Lee's “School Daze”; Eddie Murphy's “Harlem Nights”; Alex Hailey's Queen and Debbie Allen's “Stompin' at the Savoy”.  She received stellar reviews for her work on the film October Baby, and she co-starred with Lynn Whitfield in the film “My Other Mother”, which premiered recently on the UP cable network.  Most recently, she appeared in “Big Stone Gap”, the feature film version of Adriana Trigiani’s best-selling book series.

She recently appeared in an episode of BET’s “Zoe Ever After,” and other television performances include: “Melrose Place” (with Heather Locklear); “NYPD Blue” (with Jimmy Smits); “Fresh Prince of Bel Air” (with Will Smith), and “Living Single” (with Queen Latifah). One of her favorite roles was that of Roxy, the grim reaper meter maid on Showtime's hit series “Dead Like Me” (with Mandy Patinkin.).

Guy is currently performing Raisin’ Cane, a one-woman musical journey through the Harlem Renaissance, throughout the U.S..   Raisin’ Cane is backed by the Avery Sharpe Trio and is currently seen on the BET drama “The Yard.”

President W. Franklin Evans said that he is excited that Guy has accepted the invitation to speak at this year’s commencement ceremony. “Voorhees is privileged to have such a prominent and hardworking African-American woman to deliver a message of inspiration to our graduates.  We hope that her message will inspire them as they prepare to compete in global society,” Evans said.

The hooding ceremony and baccalaureate service for the 2017 May graduates will be held on Friday, May 5 at 6 p.m. in the St. Philip’s Episcopal Chapel. 

These events are free and open to the public. For more information, contact Megan Freeman, director of communications, at 803-780-1191 or at mfreeman@voorhees.edu.