Purcell will speak to graduates from the College of Arts and Letters and the College of Education and Human Development at 10 a.m. He will address graduates from the College of Nursing and Allied Health and the College of Science, Technology and Business at 3 p.m.
Purcell was named commissioner in February. He previously served as the state higher education executive in Arkansas and associate vice chancellor for strategic planning in Oklahoma.
Purcell oversees and supervises the operations of the Board of Regents’ staff and represents the state’s postsecondary education community at the state and federal level as well as with the general public. He is actively engaged in implementing Louisiana’s premier piece of higher education legislation, the Granting Resources and Autonomy for Diplomas (GRAD) Act, as well as the Performance-Based Funding Formula.
The commissioner has experience working in two-year, four-year, public and private colleges and universities in five states. He has worked in the areas of program review, academic program development, program entrance requirements, course evaluations, grade distributions, student retention and graduation and student placement.
Purcell holds a bachelor’s in public administration from Auburn University, a master’s in counseling from the University of Montevallo and a doctorate in higher education administration from the University of Alabama.