Nearly 500 graduates are ready to cross the stage to receive their degrees during two commencement ceremonies to be held at the Steinke Physical Education Center at Texas A&M University-Kingsville on Dec. 18.

At the 4 p.m. ceremony, graduates from the College of Education, the Frank H. Dotterweich College of Engineering and University College will receive their degrees. At the 7 p.m. ceremony, graduates from the Dick and Mary Lewis Kleberg College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Human Sciences and the colleges of Arts and Sciences and Business Administration will cross the stage.

Students receiving their master's and doctoral degrees will be recognized within their academic colleges.

During the commencement ceremony, Kenneth Nelson, Student Government Association president, will present the Distinguished Student Awards. Marisa Martinez-Chapa, president of the Javelina Alumni Association, will present a university ring to one deserving graduate. Andrew L. Strong, general counsel for The Texas A&M University System, will bring greetings.

LTC Ariel Rodriguez of the A&M-Kingsville ROTC will commission five cadets. John Grover Blissard, Angel Gabriel Espinoza, Jason Lee Justice, Juan Antonio Martinez and Michael Blake McCown will be commissioned as second lieutenants in the United States Army.

The keynote speaker for both ceremonies will be Dr. David Sabrio, Regents Professor of English in the department of language and literature at A&M-Kingsville. He is in his 26th year at the university. Sabrio was recently named the 11th Regents Professor at A&M-Kingsville by the Board of Regents of The Texas A&M University System.

He teaches first-year composition, sophomore literature and upper-level and graduate courses in the English Renaissance, Shakespeare and Research Methods. Sabrio has led cooperative learning workshops in Texas, Colorado, Mississippi, California and Montreal, Canada.

While at A&M-Kingsville, Sabrio has received the Hall Teaching Award and the Arts and Sciences Teaching Award. He is co-author of Insightful Writing, a first-year composition textbook used at over twenty college campuses across the United States. He has published articles and presented over 55 papers at international, national, regional and state conferences in the areas of rhetoric/composition, literature and pedagogy.

He was selected to give the Texas A&M-Kingsville Annual Faculty Lecture in 1994, and was twice selected to participate in advanced study at the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C. Sabrio has served as chair of the language and literature department, graduate English coordinator and first-year composition coordinator. He has directed 21 master's theses.

Sabrio's students have gone on to doctoral and professional programs at Texas A&M University, Texas Tech University, the University of California at San Diego, Boston University and the University of Texas at San Antonio.

His former students are teaching at the University of New Mexico, the University of Houston-Victoria, the University of Texas at Austin, Texas A&M-Kingsville, Del Mar College, Coastal Bend College, South Texas College, Grayson County Community College and Southwest Texas Junior College.