Columnist Mike Barnicle to be Main Speaker at UMass Amherst Commencement May 25

AMHERST, Mass. - Boston Globe columnist Mike Barnicle will deliver the main address at the 127th Commencement of the University of Massachusetts, to be held at 10:30 a.m. Sunday May 25, in Warren P. McGuirk Alumni Stadium. Approximately 4,000 undergraduates are candidates for bachelor''s degrees.

Barnicle will receive an honorary doctor of humane letters degree.

Since joining the editorial staff of the Globe in 1973, Barnicle has become well-known in Massachusetts for what many describe as "his unique and often witty perspective on the issues and problems of the commonwealth and the country." A Fitchburg, Mass, native and graduate of Boston University, he worked as a speech writer for the presidential campaigns of Robert Kennedy, Edmund Muskie, and George McGovern, as well as for the U.S. Senate campaign of John Tunney. He also served as a special assistant for former New York City Mayor John Lindsay. In his regular column, Barnicle, a strong proponent of public education, offers his observations on politics and the social landscape.

Additional Commencement Events

The University will hold a separate Commencement ceremony for nearly 1,300 master''s and doctoral degree candidates Saturday May 24 in the Mullins Center, beginning at 10:30 a.m.

Also on May 24, approximately 125 students will receive associate of science degrees from the Stockbridge School of Agriculture at the school''s 75th Commencement. The ceremony is at 2 p.m. in Bowker Auditorium. Keynote speaker is Bernard ("Ben") J. Doherty, senior vice president for investments at Josephthal Lyon & Ross Inc., Boston.

Doherty graduated from the Stockbridge School in 1957. He received a bachelor''s degree in veterinary and animal science in 1959 and a master''s degree in agricultural and food economics in 1964, both from UMass. Doherty served as a member of the University''s Board of Trustees from 1988-91 and is currently a member of the School of Management''s advisory council.

Other events taking place on Saturday May 24, include: Phi Beta Kappa Installation, Campus Center Auditorium, 2:30 p.m.; School of Nursing Pinning Ceremony, Fine Arts Center, 3 p.m.; ROTC Joint Commissioning Ceremony, Bowker Auditorium, 5 p.m.