More Than 2,300 Students Receive Their Degrees at LIU Brooklyn’s Commencement


Dr. Spiridon (Spiro) Spireas, Ph.D., Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of SigmaPharm Laboratories, and Dr. Naif Al-Mutawa, Ph.D., an award-winning serial entrepreneur, clinical psychologist and clinical hypnotherapist, each received honorary degrees at LIU Brooklyn’s commencement ceremony this year, which took place on May 14, 2019 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

On an unseasonably chilly morning in mid-May, the exuberant participants were grateful the graduation ceremony took place indoors at the sports facility up the street from the LIU Brooklyn campus. A total of 1005 undergraduates received their Baccalaureates; 947 students received their Master’s Degrees; 73 received their Dual Baccalaureate/Master’s Degrees; and 249 students received their Doctorates. Thirty-one students earned their Advance Certificates. The ceremony was the joint commencement of LIU Pharmacy (Arnold & Marie Schwartz College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences), LIU Brooklyn, LIU Global, and LIU Hudson of Long Island University.

A tenured Professor of Pharmacy at LIU Pharmacy, Dr. Spiridon Spireas was the keynote speaker. He received an honorary Doctor of Science degree from LIU President Dr. Kimberly R. Cline. He is the inventor and author of more than 130 international and domestic patents and patent-publications, and 200 scientific papers, books and other publication in the fields of industrial pharmacy, pharmaceutical technology, pharmacokinetics and analytical chemistry. He is also the inventor of several newly developed proprietary drug delivery systems used by the Pennsylvania-based company.

Founder of The Soor Center for Professional Therapy and Assessment in Kuwait, Dr. Naif Al-Mutawa, who also spoke, received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree. A licensed psychologist in New York State, Dubai, Qatar and Kuwait, he is a member of the American Psychological Association and the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists. He has a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from LIU, where he also earned a Master’s Degree in Clinical Psychology. Dr. Al-Mutawa has done extensive clinical work with former prisoners of war in Kuwait as well as with the Survivors of Political Torture Unit at Bellevue Hospital in New York City. He is the author of a children’s book that won a UNESCO Prize for Literature in the Service of Tolerance, and the creator of THE 99, the first group of comic superheroes born of an Islamic archetype, which drew praise from Forbes magazine as well as President Barack Obama.

When the last degree was given two cannons on opposite sides of the gymnasium floor blasted clouds of confetti into the air as the newly minted graduates cheered  with pent-up relief that they’d finally made the grade.

With $100 million in scholarships and financial aid awarded annually, LIU has 19 Schools and Colleges, 400 academic programs, a 12:1 student-to-faculty ratio, and 110 student-run clubs and organizations.

Payscale has ranked LIU Brooklyn as the “Best in the Nation for Health Professions” and one of the “Top 50 Colleges in the Northeast for Salary Potential.” Forbes ranked LIU in its Top Ten “Hot Colleges in the Making Under Innovative Management.”