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Union graduation, field house dedication set for Aug. 5

Benny and Norma Fesmire were the lead donors for construction of the Fesmire Field House.
Benny and Norma Fesmire were the lead donors for construction of the Fesmire Field House.

JACKSON, Tenn.July 28, 2006 – Carl Zylstra, president of Dordt College in Sioux Center, Iowa, will be the keynote speaker for Union University’s summer graduation ceremony Aug. 5.

About 250 students will receive degrees during the 11 a.m. ceremony at West Jackson Baptist Church, bringing the total number of graduates to more than 900 for the academic year at Union.

The day’s events will also feature the dedication of the new Fesmire Field House on the Union campus.

The Fesmire Field House is named in honor of lead donors Benny and Norma Fesmire. The 18,000-square foot facility will support the soccer teams, the men’s baseball team and the women’s softball team.

The field house includes a 9,374-square foot turf room, locker rooms and showers for each home and visiting team, coaches offices and an athletic training room.

David Blackstock, Union’s athletic director, said only one or two other colleges of Union’s size in the South have comparable facilities to the Fesmire Field House.

“This places us above most NCAA Division II schools and right up there with some of the larger NCAA Division I schools,” Blackstock said. “This definitely should help us in attracting good athletes and maintaining an excellent program, as well as improving in many areas.”

The dedication service will begin at 9 a.m.

Zylstra has been president at Dordt College since 1996. He is a 1970 graduate of Calvin College and earned his Master of Divinity degree from Calvin Theological Seminary. His doctorate came from Princeton Theological Seminary.

Zylstra is host of a weekly radio talk show, “Conversations.” He and his wife Gloria have three grown sons and seven grandchildren.

“Over the past decade, Carl Zylstra has distinguished himself as one of the most recognized leaders in the world of Christian higher education,” Union President David S. Dockery said. “His convictional voice, his intellectual and cultural engagement, his radio program and his writings have all helped shape the reputation that has brought him much respect across denominational and traditional lines. We are honored to have Dr. Zylstra with us as the speaker for Union’s August graduation ceremonies.”

Media contact: Tim Ellsworth, news@uu.edu, 731-661-5215

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