Sister Ann Marie Hudzina, FSSJ, to Address Hilbert College Class Of 2014

Release Date:
April 10, 2014
Matt Heidt,

HAMBURG, N.Y. – Sister Ann Marie Hudzina of the Franciscan Sisters of St. Joseph will be the commencement speaker at Hilbert College’s 53rd annual commencement ceremony planned for 1 p.m. on May 10 at the Wesleyan Church of Hamburg at 4999 McKinley Parkway. She will also be recognized at Hilbert’s commencement with an honorary doctorate of humane letters.

Sr. Ann Marie is the FSSJ General Minister and has been involved in education for over 30 years as an elementary, junior high and high school teacher, and an elementary school principal.  She continues her passion for education through participation on the Hilbert College and Immaculata Academy Boards of Trustees.

“I am deeply honored to be the commencement speaker at the 53rd Hilbert College Commencement,” Sr. Ann Marie said.  “I am both humbled and proud to accept this invitation in the name of the Franciscan Sisters of St. Joseph, the founding Congregation of Hilbert College.” 

“As I begin to think about my address, I find myself reflecting on the faith, vision, commitment, and risk-taking of Mother Colette Hilbert, FSSJ, who founded the Franciscan Sisters of St. Joseph and Sister Edwina Bogel, FSSJ, who founded Hilbert College. Both Mother Colette and Sister Edwina believed that a good education, influenced by Catholic, Franciscan values provided a solid foundation for individuals and the communities in which they lived, worked, and worshiped.”

In the past, Sr. Ann Marie has been involved in vocation and formation ministry for the FSSJ Congregation, and served on the Congregational Leadership Team from 1998-2006. Prior to being elected General Minister in 2010, she was the Director of Departmental Services at Immaculate Conception Convent.

As General Minister, Sr. Ann Marie assists the members of the Congregation in seeking ways to make the words of their Mission statement a lived reality. Over the past four years, in collaboration with the other four members of the FSSJ Leadership Team, Sr. Ann Marie has worked to develop a clearer picture of the Congregation’s human and financial resources in order to more effectively extend the mission, while also providing for the increasing health needs of the Sisters, today and into the future. In addition to providing for the physical needs of the FSSJ Sisters, the Leadership Team also looks to maintain personal contact with each member of the congregation, and seeks ways to enhance spiritual and communal opportunities for the Sisters. Representing the Congregation, the Leadership Team also seeks to communicate and collaborate with Church, diocesan, parish, regional and national leaders and institutions. 

Hilbert President Cynthia Zane, Ed.D., will confer bachelor of arts and bachelor of science degrees, as well as associate in applied science and associate in arts degrees to Class of 2014. In addition, President Zane will confer master of science in criminal justice administration and master of public administration degrees to the second cohort of Hilbert graduate students. Overall, more than 280 graduates will receive their degrees. Baccalaureate graduates will receive degrees in accounting, business management, computer security and information assurance, criminal justice, digital media and communication, English, forensic science/crime scene investigation, global business management, human services, liberal studies, paralegal studies, political science, psychology, rehabilitation services, small business management, and sports industry management.

Top student awards that will be presented at Hilbert’s 53rd commencement will include the:

• Lambert and Margaret Graham Award for a full-time returning adult student who has earned the highest cumulative quality point average.

• Kimberly Bruch Raczkowski Memorial Alumni Association Award for a graduate who reflects the spirit of Hilbert and its mission, and possesses strong leadership skills and demonstrates loyalty and dedication to others.

• Sister Mary Edwina Bogel Award to an outstanding female graduate in recognition of her character, intellectual achievement and devoted service to fellow students and the college.

• John Kissel Man of the Year Award to an outstanding male student in recognition of his character, intellectual progress, organizational ability, and participation in activities and programs.

Christopher Holoman, Ph.D., Hilbert provost and vice president for academic affairs, will be the master of ceremonies.

A reception for graduates, guests and others in attendance will be hosted by Hilbert President Zane in the Wesleyan Church atrium immediately following the commencement program.

Hilbert College, located in suburban Hamburg, N.Y., south of Buffalo, is a private four-year college founded in 1957 in the Catholic Franciscan tradition. With nearly 1,100 students, Hilbert is a dynamic Western New York college that offers career-focused majors, including one of the top criminal justice programs in the region, and more than 50 minors and concentrations. The college’s engaging, student-centered campus community offers numerous leadership, internship, and service learning opportunities from which students launch successful careers while making positive changes in their communities. The Hilbert Blueprint promotes a well-rounded student experience over four years – starting with the Foundations Seminar in the freshman year, followed by Sophomore Service, Junior Symposium, and culminating with the Senior Capstone. Hilbert has expanded its academic offerings with the college’s first graduate programs and new Accelerated Degree Programs geared to adult learners.