2022 Commencement Speakers

Learn about this year's Commencement event speakers, including our keynote: teacher, author, and founder of Lynda.com Lynda Weinman.
Lynda Weinman

Keynote Speaker

Lynda Weinman graduated from The Evergreen State College in 1976 with a BA in Humanities. In 2014, she received an Honorary Doctorate from Otis College of Art and Design for her contribution to the field of Distance Learning.

Right out of college, Lynda worked in retail, which culminated in owning and operating her own store in her mid-twenties. She got her first computer in 1982, six years after her college graduation. An unexpected encounter with a PC clone and the early Macintosh computer changed the direction of her life.

Lynda began her computer graphics career, first working on animation for film, tv and industry. She became a computer graphics instructor and adjunct faculty at Art Center College of Design, American Film Institute, and San Francisco State Multimedia Studies. She is the author of numerous how-to books and instructional videos and is best known for co-founding one of the world’s first online video course websites called lynda.com in 1995. The company sold to LinkedIn in 2015 and is now called LinkedIn Learning.

After an early retirement, Weinman chose to pursue a full-time art practice which led her to combine her technical skills with pottery using 3-D clay printing. She incorporates 2-D software tools such as Photoshop and Illustrator, and 3-D tools such as Rhino 3D and Grasshopper, and sleeps, breathes, and dreams in geometric and parametric forms. Her practice includes teaching and collaborations in a variety of mediums, with a focus on clay and digital fabrication.

Abigail Green ‘22

Undergraduate Student Speaker

Abigail Green ‘22

Abigail Green has always known she was destined to live a purposeful and inspirational life. Six years ago, she was forced to drop out of high school and get her GED, so she could work a full-time job to support herself. After this she never believed she would have the chance to go back to school, be a student athlete, let alone get a college degree until she took a leap of faith that changed her life forever. She made the South Puget Sound Community College volleyball team at a tryout where she received her Associates of Arts degree. She then continued to The Evergreen State College where she completed her Bachelor of Arts Degree while playing for Evergreen’s volleyball team.

She now has a fire inside of her to keep striving for more and empowering others along the way. Moving forward, she is starting a personal training business to help motivate and inspire people to find a love for life through wellness, health, and fitness. She wants to continue to use her past experiences and upbringing through books and public speaking in hopes of encouraging and uplifting others.

Levi Harter ‘22

Graduate Student Speaker

Levi Harter ‘22

Levi Harter is an Oglala Lakota Graduate of the 2022 Master in Teaching Cohort here at The Evergreen State College. Son of Charles Harter and Tana Voyles, he was born and raised north of St. Louis in the small village of Brighton, IL. During his time at Evergreen, he attended the Native Pathways Program, where he was provided with opportunities to learn through Western and Indigenous pedagogy, while maintaining and promoting and an Indigenous Worldview. In the future, Levi plans to acquire a position within the Seattle Public School District teaching social studies at the secondary level, where he lives with his partner and children.

Believing in true liberation for all oppressed peoples, both within the United States and throughout the Global South, he finds inspiration in the peoples struggles against imperialism and class exploitation and would invite everyone to challenge and address lies and injustice wherever you may find them.

Dr. Dharshi Bopegedera

Faculty Speaker

Dr. Dharshi Bopegedera joined The Evergreen State College faculty in 1991. Her primary responsibilities include teaching first year and senior level chemistry programs. She has co-taught several programs integrating chemistry with the visual arts. Providing access to chemistry to students from all backgrounds, designing engaging laboratory experiments to connect theory with practice, and increasing retention in the sciences have been her focus.

Designing and implementing a novel approach to the senior chemistry curriculum earned Dr. Bopegedera the Burlington Northern Faculty Achievement Award in 1993. This effort resulted in a measurable increase in Evergreen graduates pursuing graduate studies in chemistry. In 2014, The Evergreen State College’s president recognized her with the Faculty Achievement Award for Excellence in Teaching and Outreach. She was recently recognized by the AWIS Seattle Chapter with the Excellence in STEM Education and Outreach Award (2022).

Dr. Bopegedera is the Founding Faculty Advisor of the Evergreen Chemistry Club, whose members are an integral part of her outreach activities to the greater Olympia community. Closest to her heart is the “Chemistry in the Public Library” project that provides access to science experiments to local school children from all walks of life at the Olympia Timberland Regional Library.

Dr. Bopegedera serves on regional and national committees of the American Chemical Society.

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