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University of Virginia President John T. Casteen III challenged students to live their beliefs at Old Dominion University's fall commencement Dec. 17 at the Ted Constant Convocation Center.

"We share the conviction that to live is to act out the belief that we inherit-that we acquire by learning," said Casteen. "Today and every day forward, I encourage today's graduates to preserve the good that they have acquired and inherited."

"Old Dominion prepares its graduates to be at home in this global world, providing each of you with the skills to survive the challenges of the future," he said.

Casteen's remarks came after he was presented an honorary degree from Old Dominion University President Roseann Runte and Board of Visitors Rector Marc Jacobson.

UVa's president since 1990, Casteen previously served as president of the University of Connecticut (1985-90) and Virginia's secretary of education (1982-85).

At UVa, Casteen has overseen a major restructuring of the administrative and governance structures, one of the largest capital fund campaigns ever undertaken, significant improvements in academic programs and major expansions of the institution's physical facilities.

During his presidency, UVa has been recognized for its leadership in educating minority students, for the quality of its undergraduate teaching and for its success in refinancing itself following historic reductions in state tax support at the beginning of the decade.

Casteen, who also holds the title of George M. Kaufman Presidential Professor, has been a director of the American Council on Education and a director of the National Collegiate Athletic Association.

A Portsmouth native, he holds three degrees in English from UVa.

Approximately 1,100 students participated in the university's 105th commencement ceremony.

A videostream of commencement is available at the following website: http://www.lions.odu.edu/dept/ao/ss/commencements/2006_fall/index.htm.

This article was posted on: December 17, 2006

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Old Dominion University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action institution.