Frostburg State University Announces December 2020 Commencement Speakers

Nov 16, 2020 11:20 AM

Frostburg State University has selected its commencement speakers for the fall 2020 ceremony, Matthew Maust from the College of Business, Abigail Burdock from the College of Education and Olivia Shaffer from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. While the in-person ceremony has been postponed because of the COVID-19 pandemic, from Monday, Dec. 7, to Friday, Dec. 11, a Grad Week series of virtual recognition activities will be presented online.

Maust, of Grantsville, Md., graduates with a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration with a double concentration is human resources and business management. After earning his associate degree from Garrett College, Maust furthered his education at Frostburg, making the dean’s list every semester. Maust has experience working at both Pillar Innovations and Beitzel Corp. as a business intern and inventory assistant, respectively. He is also active on campus as a member of Frostburg CRU Campus Ministry since September 2018. After graduation, he plans to continue his career at Beitzel and pursue a master’s degree. “Matthew is a strategic thinker, an innovator, a problem solver, and highly motivated,” wrote Dr. Sudhir Singh, Dean of the College of Business, in his nomination. “But perhaps his best qualities are his positive attitude and his ability to adapt to new situations and events.”

Burdock, of Finzel, graduates with a Bachelor of Science degree in early childhood education. She is proficient in American Sign Language and has a level 5 certification to teach English as a foreign language. She was a teacher intern for second grade at Route 40 Elementary School and first grade at Grantsville Elementary, while she was a third-grade teacher assistant at Mount Savage School. She was also an academic intervention specialist for the Judy Center. Burdock has also been active on campus as a member of the President’s Leadership Circle, governance chair and member of the Executive Board of the Student Government Association, a student representative for the General Education Review Committee and a member of the Library Advisory Group. Other honors and awards include membership in the Phi Eta Sigma and Phi Kappa Phi honor societies, participation in the Sloop Institute for Excellence in Leadership and a consistent placement on the Dean’s List.

Shaffer, of Swanton, Md., graduates with a Bachelor of Science degree in interpretive biology and natural history. She has worked at Mountain Lake Biological Research Station in the National Science Foundation’s Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program, being one of only eight students selected out of 250 applicants. Shaffer has conducted independent research through the Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program. She has done numerous presentations at events, including the FSU Research Symposium, Focus Frostburg, UMBC McNair Scholars Research Conference and Entomological Society of America National Conference. She also has numerous awards and honors, including the McNair’s Scholar Fellowship, REU Travel Grant Recipient, participation in the Sloop Institute for Excellence in Leadership, Phi Sigma Eta, Sigma Alpha Pi and many merit scholarships. On campus, she has been active in Spectrum, FSU’s LGBTQ+ organization, including serving as secretary.

For more information about commencement activities, including the virtual Grad Week, visit the 2020 Commencement website.

Situated in the mountains of Allegany County, Frostburg State University is one of the 12 institutions of the University System of Maryland. FSU is a comprehensive, residential regional university and serves as an educational and cultural center for Western Maryland. For more information, visit the FSU website or the FSU Facebook page. Follow FSU on Twitter @frostburgstate.


Olivia Shaffer, Matthew Maust, Abigail Burdock