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Michael Kieschnick to Receive Honorary Degree at Drexels First Commencement in Sacramento

May 31, 2011

Drexel University has announced that Michael Kieschnick, co-founder, president and chief executive officer of CREDO/Working Assets, will deliver the keynote address at the commencement ceremony Drexel will hold at the Crocker Art Museum on Saturday, June 25. Kieschnick will be presented with an honorary doctorate of humane letters for his lifetime commitment to civic engagement and social justice.  

This marks the first commencement ceremony ever held outside of Philadelphia in Drexel’s 120-year history. It is being held in Sacramento because Drexel opened its Center for Graduate Studies there in January 2009.  The June 25 commencement will include students who enrolled in Drexel master’s degree programs in Sacramento in January and September 2009.  More than 100 students are eligible to participate in the ceremony.

“I have known Michael for 35 years and am awed by his ingenuity, global perspective and commitment to community,” said Carl “Tobey” Oxholm III, senior vice president and dean of the Graduate Center. “If personal wealth had been his object, he would be among the nation’s most affluent; instead, he has not just been successful in business, but consistently has focused on social justice and been passionate about his family. That is why he is the perfect role model for our students, who are our society’s next generation of leaders.”
Kieschnick teaches a course on microfinance at Stanford University, and previously taught a graduate seminar on financial innovation at the University of California, Berkeley. He holds a doctorate of philosophy degree in public policy from Harvard University, and earned bachelor’s degrees in biology and economics at Stanford University. He serves as a board member for several nonprofit organizations, including the League of Conservation Voters, the One PacificCoast Foundation and the Beatitudes Society. In his spare time, he helps run the Secretary of State Project, which works to elect reform candidates to the position of chief election officer at the state level around the country.

“I am honored to receive this recognition from one of the nation’s preeminent private universities, and one that has managed successfully to offer both a high-tech teaching and research environment and active engagement with its community,” said Kieschnick.  “Drexel has replicated both at its Graduate Center in Sacramento in just over two years of operation – a great innovation in higher education generally, at a time when California needs such creativity.”

Headquartered in San Francisco, CREDO/Working Assets is a telecommunications company that is dedicated to changing the world through progressive philanthropy and political activism. Since its founding, Working Assets has donated over $65 million to nonprofit organizations working for civil rights, economic and social justice, voting rights, peace, international freedom and the environment. Its members have contacted selected decision-makers by phone, email and letters more than 32 million times, pressing for political change. During the last seven years, the company has helped more than four million Americans register to vote.

Drexel University is a nationally top-ranked, comprehensive, private, not-for profit university, which was founded in Philadelphia in 1891.  Drexel’s Center for Graduate Studies is known as one of Northern California's most high-tech educational facilities. In its state-of-the-art classrooms, Drexel teaches six master's, one doctorate and one post-baccalaureate program, that are designed for working professionals, in the fields of entrepreneurial business, higher education, knowledge management and health science. It will award master’s degrees in business administration, human resource development, higher education, nurse education, nurse leadership, information systems and library and information science.  It is starting two new master’s programs this fall:  Masters in Finance and Master of Medical Science. More information on Drexel's graduate programs in California can be found at or by calling 916-325-4600.



News Media Contacts:
Carl (Tobey) Oxholm III, Senior Vice President and Dean,
Drexel University Center for Graduate Studies, Sacramento
916-325-4617 or

Alex McKechnie, News Officer, University Communications
Drexel University
215-895-2705 or

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