'Go be great,' Levy tells seniors

ESPN’s Steve Levy urged graduating seniors to seize their early opportunities and make a career out of something they love when he spoke at the annual Commencement Eve Dinner and Torchlight Ceremony.

Steve Levy '87.More than 750 graduating seniors, their families and friends joined alumni, faculty and staff May 13 in the Campus Center convocation hall and arena. An even larger crowd assembled outside to take part in the Torchlight Ceremony, which this year marked the official kickoff of SUNY Oswego’s Sesquicentennial.

“This is your shot right now. This is your time to go out and do something you love, something you are passionate about,” Levy said at Commencement Eve Dinner, which preceded the Torchlight Ceremony. “If you love something that you’re doing, chances are you’re going to be great at it.”

A 1987 graduate of Oswego, Levy got his start sportscasting at WTOP-TV and WOCR-FM (now WNYO) as a communication studies major at Oswego. He joined ESPN and became an anchor on the network’s flagship SportsCenter program in 1993.

Levy has also handled play-by-play for the NHL on ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC Sports; college football on ESPN2; and the NCAA Division I men’s hockey Frozen Four.

“I know all of you will make us, the alumni, very proud,” he said. “So I leave you with this: Get out of here. Go be great at whatever you’re great at and achieve your happiness.”

The Class of 2011 also recognized two “Outstanding Seniors” in this year’s co-award winners Adam King and Michelle Hamann at Commencement Eve Dinner.

Maynard Lonis '40Oswego alumni spanning eight decades passed the flame from the “Torch of Learning” to Class of 2011 students at the Torchlight Ceremony.

With the exception of Commencement, Torchlight is the longest-standing academic tradition on campus. “The Message of the Torch” was written more than 70 years ago by Lida Penfield, for whom Penfield Library was named.

The Oswego Alumni Association recognized 1940 graduate Maynard Lonis as the representative of the earliest class included in the Inner Circle of alumni.

This year’s Torchbearer was Tyler Hilliard of the Class of 2011. The student mistress of ceremonies was Jackie Costello, and Meghan Milewski served as student speaker. The Class of 2011 was represented in the Inner Circle by Kyle Gargan and Eric Kalichstein.

Senior Jessica Osorio hosted Commencement Eve Dinner.

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PHOTO CAPTIONS: Bright Futures—ESPN anchor and 1987 Oswego graduate Steve Levy set a goal of greatness for graduating seniors at the Torchlight Ceremony May 13.

Special Recognition—Maynard Lonis, Class of 1940, represented the earliest graduation year in this year’s Torchlight Inner Circle. Oswego Alumni Association Executive Director Betsy Oberst presented him a special certificate May 13 at Commencement Eve Dinner.

(Posted: May 17, 2011)

Tags: alumni