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Colorado State University Pueblo to Celebrate nearly 600 graduates tomorrow with 10,000 in attendance

Release Date: May 10, 2024

Gena Alfonso

Director of Communications/PIO

Colorado State University Pueblo


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The Colorado State University Pueblo ThunderBowl will be at capacity on Saturday, May 11th for the university’s commencement ceremony which begins at 8:30 a.m. The class of 2024 will be cheered on by 10,000 family members, friends, and loved ones, while more than 560 graduates receive their diplomas.

CSU Pueblo alumnus, Michael Salardino, will deliver the commencement address. He attended Southern Colorado State College (now CSU Pueblo) and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Communications. After college he worked as a disc jockey in radio and television for 18 years. He began his career in financial services with Boettcher and Company in 1987 and earned his certified financial planner status in 2001. Salardino retired in February this year and devotes his time as a volunteer board member and development director for St. John Neumann Catholic School. 

As an avid community volunteer, he has served as president of the Pueblo Child Advocacy Center, Old Timers baseball board, the Parkview Foundation board, the Sons of Italy, and the Sons of Italy Colorado Grand Lodge. Currently, he serves as president of the St. John Neumann foundation board, the Dante Alighieri Society, and the Pueblo Sister City Commission. He also services on the boards of the CSU Pueblo Foundation and the Broadway Theatre League. 

Ryeim Ansaf will receive the first diploma as the 2024 recipient of the Threlkeld Prize for Excellence. Ansaf will graduate magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology, and minors in engineering and chemistry. She is the president of the National Society of Leadership and Success, the CSU Pueblo President and Founder of the American Physician Scientists Association, and the Tri-Beta Biological Society Research Events chair. 

The second and third diploma will go to Kari Mosier and Jacob Martinez as co-recipients of the Diane Blackwell President’s Leadership Award. Mosier will graduate with a Bachelor of Science degree in Exercise Science, Physical Education, and Recreation. Martinez will graduate magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music. The Diane Blackwell award recognizes graduating students who display exceptional leadership skills, are very involved with the campus community, and tries to make CSU Pueblo a better place. Winners are recognized for their distinguished record of extraordinary service, spirit, advocacy, and involvement within the University community. 

Immediately following the ceremony, students and their guests are invited to attend “Celebrate” events scheduled across campus. The commencement “after party” events will include free food, cash bars, face painting, bounce houses (weather permitting) and music provided by DJ Tara Beatz. Celebration locations include the Patio, located on the south side of the Occhiato Student Center and the Fountain. The ThunderTruck will be at the newly renovated Paseo, located between the Life Sciences and Physics and Math buildings. Celebration locations and selfie spots will be open until 3 p.m.

The commencement ceremony and address will be streamed online at

For more information about commencement, visit

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