Family and friends filled the IZOD Center in East Rutherford, NJ, on Friday, April 27, to support Berkeley College graduates at the Commencement Ceremony of the Class of 2012.

More than 1,700 students from Berkeley College locations in New Jersey and New York, and Berkeley College Online, received Baccalaureate and Associate degrees. It was the largest graduating class in the 81-year history of the College.

“Today is a celebration of your accomplishments,” said Dario A. Cortes, PhD, Berkeley College President. “For more than 80 years, Berkeley College has been changing the lives of students who came to us in search of a better and more prosperous future. The education that they received has enabled thousands of them to find success in their careers.”

The members of the graduating class are beginning their careers at 630 companies including Bank of America, Calvin Klein, JP Morgan and Price Waterhouse Cooper, among others.

Marty Markowitz, Brooklyn Borough President, delivered the Commencement Address and was given an honorary Doctor of Law degree.

“Be the entrepreneur. These businesses that today are in America started with the genius of one person,” Mr. Markowitz told the graduates. “It’s young and innovative rising stars like you who create the exciting jobs and businesses that can really change the world.”

Honorary degrees also were awarded to two Berkeley College Trustees Emeriti. Gwendolyn Jordan Dungy, PhD, was awarded an honorary Doctor of Pedagogy degree, and Sharon Anderson Lewis, PhD, was awarded an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree.

A leader in business education for 80 years, Berkeley College is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education and enrolls more than 8,700 students — including more than 800 international students — in its Baccalaureate and Associate degree programs. The College has four New York locations — Midtown Manhattan, Lower Manhattan in the Wall Street area, Brooklyn, and White Plains. And in New Jersey there are four locations — Woodland Park, Paramus, Woodbridge, and Newark.  Berkeley College Online also offers full degree programs. Programs are offered in more than 20 career fields. The website address is www.BerkeleyCollege.edu.