Press Release
Thomas College Announces 130th Commencement Ceremonies and Speakers  MacKenzie Riley Young | April 1, 2024

WATERVILLE, MAINE, April 2024 — Thomas College announces it will host its 130th Commencement ceremony on Saturday, May 11, 2024 at 1 p.m. Thomas College will also hold its Honors Convocation ceremony on Friday evening, May 10, 2024 at 4 p.m.

Provost Thomas S. Edwards, Ph.D., is pleased to announce the speakers, marshals, and honorary degree recipients for the 130th annual commencement ceremonies.

Representing the Undergraduate Division as Class Speaker will be Molly Rae Sottak. Sottak is from Belmont, New Hampshire and is graduating magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education-English Language Arts. After graduation, she plans to return to Thomas College to earn her master’s degree and continue to participate in track and field.

Representing the Graduate Division as Graduate Class Speaker will be Nathaniel John White. White is from Waterville, Maine and is graduating with a Master of Science in Educational Leadership – Principal/Superintendent track. White earned his bachelor’s degree from Thomas College in 2009 and his Master of Business Administration in Healthcare Management in 2022. White currently works as a seventh-grade science teacher at Waterville Junior High School. He aspires to be a school administrator in the future.

Assisting the graduating class this year as marshals will be Brooke Phillips from Gorham, Maine, and Julia Reny from Gardiner, Maine.

Phillips is graduating magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and a minor in Marketing Management. After graduation, Phillips hopes to enter the workforce while pursuing her Master of Business Administration online from Thomas College.

Reny is graduating summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education. After graduation, Reny plans to return to Thomas College to work towards her master’s degree in educational leadership.  

This year’s Honors Convocation speaker will be Michelle Hayes, former Human Resource and Retail Operations executive with Hannaford Supermarkets and Thomas College Trustee.

Governor of the State of Maine Janet Mills will be this year’s Commencement Speaker. Mills will be awarded an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree at this year’s Commencement ceremonies.

Three other individuals will be recognized with honorary degrees at this year’s ceremony: Gena Canning, formerly of Pine State Trading Co., and Beverly and David Worthington, founders of the Worthington Foundation. David unfortunately passed in February of this year, so his award at commencement will be posthumous.

For more information on these individuals and on the 130th commencement ceremonies, please visit our website at

About Thomas College:  

U.S. News and World Report consistently ranks Thomas College as a top college in Maine for social mobility. Our clear career focus and one-of-a-kind Guaranteed Job Program™ makes it possible to advance faster in the arts and sciences, business, and education. Earn an undergraduate degree in three years and then choose from a variety of in-person or online graduate degree programs that can be completed in one-year or two. Located in Waterville, Maine, Thomas College is your pathway to a promising future, guaranteed. For more information, visit or contact MacKenzie Riley Young at [email protected] or 207-859-1313. Find us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, and TikTok