Retiring Shasberger to Address Grads

By Scott Craig   |   May 10, 2022
The diligent and adaptable class of 2022 will walk on Thorrington Field (photo by Brad Elliott)

Michael Shasberger, who retires as the inaugural Adams professor of music and worship, delivers the address at Commencement Saturday, May 7, at 9 am on Westmont’s Thorrington Field. Westmont President Gayle D. Beebe presents Westmont Medals to Steven A. and Denice D. Fellows for their tireless service and dedicated leadership in improving the delivery of healthcare. The ceremony, which is closed to the general public, will be livestreamed at

A) Michael Shasberger speaks at Commencement May 7 (photo by Brad Elliott)

About 267 graduates will participate in Commencement, and 119 will graduate with honors. Also, 117 Golden Warriors who graduated in 1970, 1971, or 1972 will march in the procession to celebrate their 50th reunions. Graduates Michael Kong and Taylor Mache will offer reflections. 

Acting Provost Rick Ifland will give Faculty Scholarship Awards to graduating seniors attaining the highest cumulative grade-point average during their four years at Westmont: Talia Bjelland, Hannah Grierson, Maggie Hine, Kong, and Joshua Phillips all earned perfect 4.0 GPAs. John Corbett graduates with a triple major in biology, chemistry, and religious studies.

“Our graduating students not only endured but have triumphed,” Ifland said of the class of 2022 at the Academic Awards Convocation April 25. “You are impressive, every one of you. Thank you for your patience, for your diligence, and for your ability to adapt to changing circumstances. What an unusual college experience you’ve had. We appreciate your fantastic attitude toward each other and all that you’ve done to enrich campus life and to further the work of Westmont. You’ve been such a positive influence on campus during a very trying time. So, congratulations to all of you on your great accomplishments both in and out of the classroom.”

Shasberger, who will speak about “Profiles in Learning,” arrived at Westmont in 2005, bringing a whirlwind of energy, enthusiasm, and excellent music. That year, he staged the first of 17 extraordinary Christmas Festivals. During his time at Westmont, Shasberger has recruited outstanding student musicians, added significant scholarships, grown the orchestra, strengthened vocal programs, and taken the Christmas event to new heights. He retires this month after taking the orchestra overseas for 10 days, performing in Salzburg, Vienna, and Prague and participating in the American Celebration of Music in Austria.

The Fellows have faithfully supported Westmont and countless other nonprofit organizations and boards throughout our community. Steven worked for more than 40 years in healthcare leadership and retired recently after 16 years as the executive vice president and chief operating officer for Cottage Health in Santa Barbara. He previously served in various leadership roles at hospitals in Los Angeles and Sacramento. Denice served as the volunteer coordinator for Sutter Health and as a scout executive for the Boy Scouts of America. She has served on the Westmont Foundation Board, including two years as president.


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