UPIKE Commencement Ceremonies set for May 4

The University of Pikeville (UPIKE) will honor students earning degrees in undergraduate, graduate and health professions on Saturday, May 4, at the Appalachian Wireless Arena in downtown Pikeville. The ceremony for the Kentucky College of Osteopathic Medicine and the Kentucky College of Optometry will take place at 9:30 a.m., and the ceremony for the College of Arts and Sciences, the Coleman College of Business, the College of Nursing and Human Services and the Patton College of Education will take place at 2 p.m. Both events will be available for viewing via livestream on UPIKE’s Facebook page.

The keynote speaker for the health professions ceremony is Tim Robinson, Jr., founder and CEO of Addiction Recovery Care, LLC, which operates a network of more than 30 addiction programs in Eastern and Central Kentucky, based in Louisa. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Political Science from Cumberland College, and with his Juris Doctorate from the University of Kentucky College of Law. Robinson served as a partner at Hogan & Robinson, PLLC, before founding Addiction Recovery Care. 

Robinson is a recovering alcoholic and former prosecutor who celebrated 17 years of sobriety in December of 2023. He and his wife Lelia, consider it their mission to help those with substance abuse issues while focusing on the alleviation of generational poverty. They have dedicated their lives to offering opportunities for treatment throughout Kentucky. It is their heart and goal to help each and every person who is suffering from addiction.

The keynote speaker for the graduate and undergraduate ceremony will be Charles “Rusty” Justice, cofounder of Bit Source. He attended the University of Kentucky where he earned a double Bachelor of Science in Mining and Mineral Engineering and Civil Engineering. With extensive experience in business management, civil and mining engineering, technology, workforce development and community development, Justice has spent a lifetime dedicated to refining coal mining processes and creating new business opportunities in the region.

When the coal industry began to decline, Justice and his business partner Lynn Parrish established Bit Source in Pikeville, the “center of Central Appalachia,” as he calls it. The company’s mission is to reskill and upskill former coal miners in new employment within the digital economy. Justice works diligently to strengthen community ties and increase opportunities for Appalachians. 

For more ceremony information, visit upike.edu/commencement.