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Northwest Missouri State University

News Release

April 13, 2009

British professor to deliver spring commencement address

Professor Philip Sullivan

Professor Philip Sullivan

Spring commencement ceremonies at Northwest Missouri State University will take place at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturday, May 2, in Bearcat Arena. This year's commencement speaker is Professor Philip Sullivan of De Monfort University, Leicester, England.

Students from the Melvin D. and Valorie G. Booth College of Business and Professional Studies and candidates for advanced degrees from the Graduate School will receive their diplomas during the morning ceremony. The afternoon exercises are for students graduating from the College of Arts and Sciences and the College of Education and Human Services.

Doors to the arena open one hour prior to each ceremony. Degree candidates can pick up their caps and gowns between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday, April 27, through Friday, May 1, at the Student Services Center on the first floor of the Administration Building. Tickets are not required for admission.

Complete details about spring commencement at Northwest are posted on the Senior Spot Web site at

Sullivan is noted throughout the United Kingdom for conducting research and disseminating information about management practices and policies within higher education.

Over the past decade he has conducted projects for universities across the U.K. as well as for a number of British government agencies, including the Higher Education Funding Council for England, the Leadership Foundation for Higher Education, the Higher Education Academy and the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education.

Sullivan's association with Northwest began through projects for the HEFCE that focused on the University's Culture of Quality and the transferability of quality management practices to institutions in the United Kingdom.

He has made frequent visits to the Northwest campus in Maryville to study the experiences of faculty, staff and students, and has shared his findings with universities in the United Kingdom, where his work is having an impact on both institutional and governmental policy.

In return, Northwest President Dean L. Hubbard and others from the University have visited the U.K., where their presentations on the Culture of Quality, student employment and other issues have met with an enthusiastic response.

In July 2009, after more than twenty years of service, Sullivan will retire from De Montfort University in Leicester, England, which has conferred on him the title of emeritus professor of higher education policy. He plans to continue his career with Liverpool John Moores University as visiting professor of excellence in higher education.

Sullivan started his professional career as a designer specializing in interiors and point-of-sale merchandising before going into educational leadership and administration. He is married to fashion and textile designer Wendy Sullivan, whose has created designs for such noted labels as Jaeger and Mulberry.

The Sullivans live in Leicestershire, England, in a farmhouse built in 1778, the same year George Washington and the Continental Army camped in Valley Forge, Pa. This connection, together with their affection for Northwest, contributes to a longstanding interest in the people and history of the United States.

For more information, please contact:

Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager | 660.562.1704 | Fax: 660.562.1900

Northwest Missouri State University
215 Administration Building | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468