by Alana J. Mauger
John A. Fry, president of Drexel University, will deliver the 2013 Commencement keynote address to graduates during Montgomery County Community College’s (MCCC) 46th Commencement ceremony on May 23 at 7 p.m. in Blue Bell.
“Through the years, our institutions have built a strong partnership, and Drexel has been growing in popularity as a transfer destination for the College’s graduates, especially as we strive to expand the way our students think about transferring and what they are capable of achieving,” said Dr. Karen A. Stout, president, MCCC.
Drexel will soon offer doctoral and master’s degree programs in Pottstown through MCCC’s University Center framework, which expands higher education opportunities for residents of Montgomery County and surrounding areas. Through partnerships with select four-year institutions, students can pursue baccalaureate and graduate degree programs conveniently at the College’s campuses in Blue Bell and Pottstown.
“President Fry’s selection as our Commencement speaker emphasizes Montgomery County Community College’s commitment to building entrepreneurial pathways to higher education, which is at the heart of our student access, success and completion efforts,” said Dr. Stout.
Fry was appointed as Drexel’s 14th president in 2010, after serving the higher education sector for his entire professional career. Under Fry’s leadership, Drexel aims to set a new standard for co-operative education, transform its online and hybrid offerings, and become a powerful force for economic development in the Greater Philadelphia region.
In addition to serving as president of Drexel University, Fry serves as president of the Drexel University College of Medicine and chairman and CEO of Drexel e-Learning, Inc., the University’s for-profit subsidiary marketing online Drexel degree programs.
Prior to Drexel, Fry served as president of Franklin & Marshall College, where he was instrumental in the college’s academic growth, campus and neighborhood development and improved finances. Under his leadership, Franklin & Marshall made a long-term commitment to increase its financial aid to attract and enroll the most highly qualified students. Fry forged new partnerships with the city and neighbors, improving the surrounding business district and neighborhoods.
Fry also served as executive vice president of the University of Pennsylvania from 1995-2002.
He serves on the boards of the Shipley School, the Milton Hershey School, Lafayette College, Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce, Select Greater Philadelphia and US Squash. He is also a director of Community Health Systems, Delaware Investments, The Hershey Trust and NASDAQ-OMX.
A native of Brooklyn, N.Y., President Fry studied American civilization at Lafayette College and received the George Wharton Pepper Prize, the highest honor awarded to a graduating senior. In 1986, he earned a master’s degree in business administration from the New York University Stern School of Business. John and his wife, Cara, an art historian, have three children: Mia, a senior at Williams College; Nathaniel, a senior at The Shipley School; and Phoebe, a sixth grader at The Shipley School.