WESTMINSTER -- Diane Rehm, host and producer of WAMU's celebrated "Diane Rehm Show" in Washington, will be honored at Western Maryland College's Commencement at 2 p.m. May 23 in the Gill Physical Education Learning Center.
Rehm, in her 13th year as host of her talk show, will receive an honorary doctorate in journalism.
A second honorary degree will be presented to George F. Varga, president of General Electric's historic joint-manufacturing venture with the Tungsram company in Hungary and a 1961 graduate of Western Maryland College. Varga, also a member of the college's Board of Trustees, will receive an honorary doctorate in humanities.
Rehm began her radio career in 1973 as an assistant producer of talk shows at WAMU, and soon became host and producer of two medical interest programs.
In 1979, she was hired as host of "Kaleidoscope," the station's morning talk show. Five years later, it was renamed for the host.
Varga, a native of Hungary who fled its communist regime during the 1956 revolt, arrived at Western Maryland in early 1957 by way of refugee camps in Austria and New Jersey.
With the support of the Westminster Methodist Church, he started at the college that fall. While at WMC, Varga capitalized on his well-honed skills in soccer, scoring a record 10 goals in one game before being chosen an All-American.
On the academic front, he studied economics and graduated cum laude to earn a scholarship to Stanford University in California, where he received a master's degree in economics.
In 1989, he was honored with WMC's Trustee Alumni Award. Later that year, he was elected to the college's Board of Trustees.
Varga's return to his native Hungary two years ago as the director of General Electric's venture with the Tungsram light bulb manufacturing company in Budapest was a significant part of this international story.
Other highlights will include greetings from a graduating senior and a master's candidate, a parent and a Western Maryland educator.
They are, respectively: Margaret T. Farrelly, an English major who is daughter of James Farrelly of Frederick; Matthew J. Robinson of Westminster, receiving a master's in school administration; A. Darlene Boggs, mother of English major Jenifer-Jo Boggs of Stevens, Pa.; and Donald R. Rabush, professor of education at the college.