Manor College announces 2021 Commencement Speaker – Pennsylvania’s Acting Secretary of Education, Noe Ortega

The Manor College 2021 Commencement is set for Thursday, May 13, 2021 at 1:00pm in Manor’s Parking Lot as a Drive In formatted ceremony 

On Thursday, May 13, 2021, the graduating class of 2021 will drive into campus and attend a uniquely styled and meaningful Drive In Commencement ceremony at Manor College, surrounded by family, friends, faculty, staff and alumni. 100+ students, who have demonstrated their competence and excellence through hard work, dedication and resilience, will receive their long-awaited Bachelor degrees in Arts and Sciences, and Associate degrees in Arts and Sciences.

Pennsylvania’s Acting Secretary of Education, Noe Ortega, is this year’s commencement speaker. Raised in Robstown, Texas, Secretary Ortega is a lifelong educator, higher education professional and colleague to Manor College. Prior to his appointment, he served as the Deputy Secretary and Commissioner for the Office of Postsecondary and Higher Education at the Pennsylvania Department of Education. As Deputy Secretary and Commissioner, he led the work of the agency aimed at closing the postsecondary attainment gaps that have persisted among historically underrepresented populations and communities of color in Pennsylvania.

“Secretary Ortega understands how higher education and its challenges, such as access and affordability, impact students disparately” said Manor College’s President Jonathan Peri, “Thanks to his research, his action and his leadership, Pennsylvania’s schools across the board are becoming more equitable every day.  We are blessed that he will be our commencement speaker for 2021.”

Prior to his work as Deputy Secretary and Commissioner for Higher Education, Secretary Ortega spent eight years at the University of Michigan, where he held several academic and administrative roles. During his tenure he worked as the Assistant Director and Senior Research Associate at the National Center for Institutional Diversity and as the Managing Director for the National Forum on Higher Education for the Public Good. Though most of his research focused on postsecondary access and success for all students, his most recent publications examine how public investment in higher education influences decision-making at colleges and universities.

Additionally, Secretary Ortega spent nearly a decade working in the areas of financial aid and enrollment management at both public and private universities in Texas, and he also served as a P-16 Specialist for the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. Secretary Ortega also spent nearly seven years as director of a language institute in Japan where he trained teachers in the area of early childhood language acquisition.

“I am honored for the opportunity to address Manor College’s class of 2021 as the commencement speaker and to help celebrate this incredible milestone,” said Acting Secretary of Education Noe Ortega. “Each student has worked very hard to get to this day, and they have a lot to be proud of as they pursue their unique paths ahead. I look forward to joining them, their families, and the campus community in recognition of this special occasion.”

Manor College welcomes Pennsylvania’s Acting Secretary of Education, Noe Ortega, as its 2021 Commencement speaker, and is looking forward to hearing his thoughtful remarks to the Manor graduates.

For more information about the 2021 Manor College Commencement ceremony please visit: