LMU Commencement Will Feature Astronaut John Shoffner as Speaker

John shoffner headshot

Lincoln Memorial University (LMU) is thrilled to announce the upcoming Commencement Exercises for the spring Class of 2024 set to take place on May 4 at 10 a.m. at Tex Turner Arena. LMU is honored to welcome distinguished astronaut John Shoffner as the commencement speaker.


In May 2023, Shoffner served as the pilot on the Axiom Space Ax-2 mission to the International Space Station (ISS), where he captivated audiences worldwide with live demonstrations of life in microgravity. Throughout his mission, Shoffner hosted educational events with schools across the globe, facilitated an International Art and Poetry contest, and contributed to groundbreaking life science research experiments.


As the 598th person to orbit the Earth, Shoffner made history as the first Alaska-born astronaut of record. Beyond his achievements in space exploration, Shoffner is an accomplished aviator, skydiver, racecar driver, cyclist, and business pioneer. He retired as CEO of Dura-Line Corporation, a world market leader in fiber optic cable placement, and now focuses on promoting STEAM education through his Perseid Foundation.


The Perseid Foundation, launched by Shoffner following his spaceflight, aims to inspire the next generation of learners by providing innovative educational opportunities. Through partnerships with schools across Appalachia, the foundation works to enhance STEAM curriculum development and foster a culture of curiosity and lifelong learning.


Since returning from space, Shoffner has received numerous accolades, including the first-ever key to the city of Middlesboro, Kentucky, in recognition of his dedication to education and community development. He continues to inspire students and educators through classroom visits, curriculum development initiatives, and speaking engagements around the world.


A clear bag policy will be in effect for the ceremony.

The event will be streamed live at https://portal.stretchinternet.com/lincolnmemorialevents/

Graduates who wish to receive a link to download individual photographs on the stage and at the backdrop should complete the form at this link: Graduation Photography Access - Formstack. The email with download instructions will be sent 4-6 weeks after graduation.


Lincoln Memorial University is a values-based learning community dedicated to providing educational experiences in liberal arts and professional studies. The main campus is in Harrogate, Tennessee. For more information about the undergraduate and graduate programs available at LMU, contact the Office of Admissions at 423-869-6280 or email at admissions@lmunet.edu.



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