A total of 841 individual degrees and certificates of advanced study were conferred on School of Information Studies graduate and undergraduate students at Syracuse University Saturday.

This year’s convocation ceremonies also marked the “graduation” of iSchool Dean Liz Liddy, who, after a distinguished 30-plus year career there as a graduate and doctoral student, faculty member, dean, and special service as interim provost at Syracuse University, is retiring.

Degrees and certificates awarded included:

Doctoral Degrees:

  • Three Ph.D. (Doctor of Philosophy) degrees in Information Science and Technology

Master’s Degrees (a total of 425):

  • 129 Master of Science in Library and Information Science
  • 23 Master of Science in Library and Information Science with Specialization in School Media
  • 185 Master of Science degrees in Information Management
  • 4 Master of Science degrees in Telecommunications and Network Management
  • 78 Master of Science degrees in Applied Data Science
  • 6 Master of Science degrees in Enterprise Data Systems

Certificates of Advanced Studies (a total of 192):

  • 154 in Applied Data Science
  • 3 in Global Enterprise Technology
  • 33 in Information Security Management
  • 2 in School Media

Undergraduate Degrees (221 total):

  • 221 students were named as candidates for Bachelor of Science in Information Management & Technology degrees.

A “Graduating” Dean

The event was a milestone for the dean of the iSchool, Liz Liddy, as well.

Liddy, who began her long career at the iSchool as a master’s student in library and information Science, told the audience of students, family, friends, faculty, and staff at the undergraduate and graduate ceremonies that the day marked her own “graduation,” too. After well over 35 years of her own graduate education, teaching as a faculty member and service the past 10 years as dean of the school, Liddy is retiring.

“Today, I am graduating, too, after 30 years, the last 10 as dean of the iSchool, which I love. I will miss you of course and I wish you the best.”

Tribute and Certificate

Arthur Thomas, professor of practice, who presided over remarks at the graduate school convocation, announced news he said was received earlier that afternoon that the Syracuse University Board of Trustees had appointed Liddy with the honorary title of Dean Emerita. He then presented a certificate of appreciation to Liddy from the iSchool faculty, “in recognition and gratitude for your exemplary leadership and for your service to this school.”

Dean Liddy responded, “Thank you. I really, really love the iSchool and will stay connected, so thank you; it really, really matters.”

Student, Faculty Member, Leader

Liddy enrolled in the information school for part-time classes in library and information science while working full time and earned her master’s degree in 1977. In 1983, she entered the school’s doctoral program, also uniquely as a part-time Ph.D. student. She became a visiting professor in 1983, and in 1984, started her successful text-mining and natural language processing company, commercializing her groundbreaking research and earning eight software patents.

After receiving her doctorate in 1988, Liddy became a full-time faculty member, serving on the faculty until being named interim dean in 2007, then dean in 2008. She has served as the iSchool’s dean since, except for a short time in 2015-2016 when she was selected by Chancellor Kent Syverud as interim provost and vice chancellor of the University. Liddy returned to the iSchool in May, 2016 and has continued service as dean since then.

Over the course of her career, she has led 70 research projects and authored 110 research papers, established and directed the iSchool’s Center for Natural Language Processing, and led the iSchool to a prestigious international standing. She has also gained prominence for the iSchool for its leading-edge programs, a focus on innovation, entrepreneurship and immersion studies, and an impressive record of promoting the education and careers of women in technology.