Commencement 2020


Friday, May 8, 2020, 4:00 p.m. – 5:15 p.m.

Wesley Memorial United Methodist Church

Speaker: Rev. Dr. Frank K. Thomas

*Undergraduate Students Only.

Reverend Dr. Frank K. Thomas, a native of Detroit, Michigan, joined the United States Army after completing his secondary education at Henry Ford High School in 1982. He served as a Combat Engineer for 25 years ending his career as the Senior Military Science Instructor at Wake Forest University. He was most recently the Director of Custodial Services, Facilities and Campus Services at the university. He is a member of the prestigious Sergeant Audie Murphy and Sergeant Morales clubs; a life member of the Association of the United States Army, the Non-Commissioned Officers Association, and the Big Red One (BRO) Society. His military awards are extensive…they include the Corps of Engineers Bronze Order of the de Fluery Medal.

Dr. Thomas accepted his call to the gospel ministry in June 1985 and was ordained in January 1989 at his home church New Jerusalem Temple Baptist Church in Detroit, Michigan. He received a Master of Ministerial Arts degree from the A.L. Hardy Academy of Theology in Seattle, Washington and an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree from St. Thomas Christian University in Jacksonville, Florida. During his military career, Dr. Thomas served military congregations in Korea; Fort Lewis, Washington; Aschaffenburg, Germany; Fort Ord, California; and as pastor of congregations in Kosovo and Schweinfurt, Germany. He also served in several ministry capacities within baptist churches in Olympia, Washington and Orange Park, Florida.

Prior to his retirement from the army in December 2007, he served as Interim Pastor of Mt. Zion Baptist Church in High Point, North Carolina. In June 2009, he accepted the church’s call to become their 6th Pastor. During the first year after his arrival, he worked with the city on a project that resulted in the church building at 753 Washington Street being listed with the National Park Service as a Historic Site. The church has also purchased a Hammond organ and a 15 passenger bus with car-port. They have completed a restoration of the sanctuary and were recently the (gift) recipient of a full renovation project for the fellowship hall by F.L. Blum Construction Company of Winston Salem in 2016; along with adding a computer lab with computers donated by the City of High Point. Mt. Zion has also partnered with High Point University (HPU) to operate a Community Writing Center, an after-school program where HPU students mentor elementary and middle school students.

Dr. Thomas is currently the Executive Secretary for the Rowan Missionary Baptist Association; the former president of the Ministers Conference of High Point and Vicinity; and a Life Member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). Committed to the community, he formerly served on the Board of Directors with the Piedmont Health Services & Sickle Cell Agency (PHSSCA), High Point Jail Ministry, and Shepherd Center of Winston-Salem. And currently with the High Point Chamber of Commerce Advisory Board (2019 Chair), Business High Point, UnitedWay of Greater High Point (2018 Campaign Chair), Board of Visitors at High Point University, Board of Directors of Foundation for a Healthy High Point, and Board of Trustees of High Point Medical Center.

He and his wife Mary have three daughters, Alicia, Tiffany and Crystal and are the proud grandparents to two granddaughters, Autumn and Zur



Complimentary tickets are required for this event, and must be picked up in advance. Each undergraduate candidate for graduation is permitted a maximum of two guest tickets (the graduate will be required to show their Passport Card and be dressed in regalia for entry).

Tickets are limited and are available on a first-come, first-served basis.  A ticket does not guarantee admittance.  We will do everything we can to maximize seating capacity and have arranged for a video broadcast to the church fellowship hall. Guests should expect to wait in line.

Tickets may be picked up on the Slane Student Center track on April 30 from 8:30am-7:00pm. From May 1 to May 7, tickets may be picked up during normal office hours (8:30am-5:00pm Monday-Friday and 10:00am-2:00pm Saturday) at the Slane Student Center Concierge Desk.

August and December 2019 candidates for graduation who are not able to pick up tickets at the designated locations are asked to contact the Campus Concierge at (336) 841-4636.

Baccalaureate is for High Point University undergraduate candidates for graduation, their families and guests, and special guests. It is not open to the general public.

General Information and Seating Policy

Wesley Memorial United Methodist Church is located on the corner of Chestnut Drive and Westchester Drive (1225 Chestnut Drive) in High Point. Parking will be available at the church.

Baccalaureate is a very well-attended event during Commencement Weekend and their is limited seating inside the Wesley Memorial sanctuary. Doors will open at 3:00pm and guests must enter the Church with everyone in their party in order to be seated together. Saved seats are not permitted, all seats will be filled with no empty seats between guests. Ushers will escort guests to available seats.  Baccalaureate guests should expect a line and be aware that a ticket does not guarantee a seat. We appreciate your patience and understanding as we try to accommodate as many families as possible. 

Parking will be available for guests with special needs on a first-come, first-served basis adjacent to the church.  Drivers must display state-issued placards or license plates to enter the parking lot.  Please enter the first entrance on the right coming from Westchester Drive.

Appropriate attire for this event is business attire.

Flash photography and video cameras are not permitted inside the church during the service.

Candidates for Graduation Information

Full academic regalia is required for this service. The line of march will assemble at 3:15 p.m. in the Dining Hall at the Church by entering through the doors marked with the red “Welcome” flags. The Junior Marshals are in charge of the line of march, and candidates for graduation are asked to line up as requested by the Junior Marshals.

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Commencement Weekend 2019 Photostream