Stephen F. Austin State University

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SFA chair of military science to offer commencement address

May 6, 2015 - University Marketing Communications
Lt. Col. David Miller
NACOGDOCHES, Texas - Lt. Col. David Miller, chair of the Department of Military Science at Stephen F. Austin State University, will offer the commencement address during the university's spring graduation ceremonies Saturday, May 16.

Miller, a resident of Nacogdoches, earned a Bachelor of Business Administration and Master of Science in safety engineering with an environmental emphasis from Murray State University.

The lieutenant colonel's previous assignment was at U.S. Army Pacific Command, where he served as the facility and construction branch chief, deputy chief of staff for engineering.

Following his commission in the U.S. Army as an armor officer, Miller attended the armor officer's basic course and graduated on the commandant's list at Fort Knox, Kentucky. His additional assignments included serving as a platoon leader, executive officer, assistant operations officer, company commander, battalion operations officer and military transition team leader.

In addition, Miller served three years as an assistant professor of military science at New Mexico Military Institute followed by an assignment as the G3 mobilization officer for the 416th Engineer Command in Darien, Illinois. During this assignment, Miller completed the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College.

Miller has received more than 20 awards and decorations while serving his country, including a Bronze Star Medal, Army Meritorious Service Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal and Global War on Terrorism Service Medal. Furthermore, he was permanently awarded a Meritorious Unit Citation, two Joint Meritorious Unit Awards and is the recipient of the Bronze order of the de Fleury Medal as an honorary member of the engineer regiment.

Miller said he has never missed a commencement ceremony in his three years at SFA or an opportunity to carry on the tradition of recognizing ROTC officers established by his predecessor.

"I have been at every graduation to shake the hands of my officers as they exit the stage after receiving their diplomas," he said. "I am proud of them."

As the commencement speaker, Miller said he hopes to inspire the graduates by speaking from his heart. "I plan to encourage the graduates to further their education and lead by example. They should learn to never take 'no' as an answer and to also stay true to their moral compass. And, if given the opportunity, they should give back to their families, the community or this university that has given so much to them."

Miller was recently selected for the Broadening Opportunities Program to attend the British Advanced Command and Staff College in Shrivenham, England. He will leave his post at SFA this summer. Miller has been married to his wife, Sara, for 15 years, and the couple has three children.

More than 1,400 SFA degrees are expected to be awarded this spring, making it the university's largest graduating class to date. Miller will provide the commencement address at the morning ceremony and the afternoon ceremony.

Candidates from SFA's James I. Perkins College of Education and College of Fine Arts will participate in a 9:30 a.m. ceremony. Candidates from the Arthur Temple College of Forestry and Agriculture, the Nelson Rusche College of Business, the College of Liberal and Applied Arts, and the College of Sciences and Mathematics will participate in a 2 p.m. ceremony. Master's and doctoral candidates will graduate with their respective colleges.

During spring graduation, 1,094 bachelor's degrees, 290 master's degrees and 18 doctoral degrees are expected to be awarded. Students graduating with honors include 126 cum laude, 98 magna cum laude and 108 summa cum laude.