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The University of Alabama

Media Advisory: UA’s Winter Commencement Exercises

UA’s Winter Commencement Exercise

Saturday, Dec. 14, 9 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.

Coleman Coliseum


David Miller, 205/348-0825,
Shane Dorrill (Broadcast Media Only), 205/348-8319,

Saturday’s ceremony: All undergraduate and graduate diplomas will be awarded. More information can be found at and The commencement ceremonies will be broadcast live over the Internet.The webcast will be archived on UA’s website, and it will be available for viewing for 30 days following the ceremony.

Inspiring Graduates

Tim Sutton

Bachelor’s, telecommunication and film

Tim Sutton’s search for a major started at “undecided.” He then tried physics, electrical engineering and computer science. “Turns out, I wasn’t very good at any of those,” said Sutton. Sutton, of Cullman, eventually found his way to the College of Communication and Information Sciences, where he found his niche in telecommunication and film. Sutton has been working the past few years with a couple of friends on a YouTube series called “Marble Hornets”, a web series about a group of friends stalked by a paranormal entity. Their YouTube channel has close to 350,000 subscribers and more than 50 million views, and they have a contract with Mosaic Media Group for a film based on their concept and characters that will come out in 2014. “It’s finished with production, and currently in post-production,” Sutton said of the film adaptation. “We’re hoping for early spring release, hopefully theatrical. That’s the goal.”

Charles Williams

Doctorate, civil engineering

It’s uncommon for a licensed professional engineer outside of academia to pursue a doctoral degree. Charles Williams, engineering manager for the city of Jackson, Miss., found out as much when he pitched the idea of pursing his doctoral degree while working full-time in Jackson. Williams, a native of Clinton, Miss., said he spoke with “several universities” about his plan but was turned down by all schools except The University of Alabama. “Dr. (Edward) Gibson, who was the chair of the civil, construction, and environmental department, was willing to work with me, and that is how I ended up at UA. One of the requirements for the graduate school was everyone admitted to UA had to spend one academic calendar year (two consecutive semesters) on campus full time. So I traveled to UA twice a week on Tuesday and Thursday to fullfill this requriement. I had to leave Jackson by 4 a.m. to be on campus in time to meet a 8 o’clock class. I also drove back each day usually getting home about 8 or 9.” Saturday, Williams, who has served in various engineering capacities for the City of Jackson for 11 and a half years, will receive his doctoral degree. “My endeavor to achieve a Ph.D. was to advance my academic career and professional career. The road was not easy and very challenging at times to balance a career, family and academics. I am extremely grateful for being a part of the engineering community at UA.”

Courtney Green

Bachelor’s, finance; master’s, applied statistics

Described by insurance and financial services professor William Rabel as one of the brightest students in Culverhouse College of Commerce, Courtney Green is set to receive a bachelor’s in finance and her master’s in applied statistics. Despite the workload, Green was an active leader in various student groups. She served as 2012–13 president of the Alabama Insurance Society/Gamma Iota Sigma. Under her leadership, the GIS Epsilon Honorary Chapter earned the most awards ever in an international competition. Green, a Harvest native, was the recipient of the Robert W. Hodgkins/State Farm scholarship awarded by the University’s program in insurance & financial services, risk management, and actuarial science. She also received the nationally competitive Ezra Penland Foundation Scholarship and National Association of Black Actuaries Scholarships.  After graduation, Green will be employed by UNUM Life Insurance Co., Chattanooga, Tenn.

The University of Alabama, a student-centered research university, is experiencing significant growth in both enrollment and academic quality. This growth, which is positively impacting the campus and the state's economy, is in keeping with UA's vision to be the university of choice for the best and brightest students. UA, the state's flagship university, is an academic community united in its commitment to enhancing the quality of life for all Alabamians.