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Karen Nyberg receives honorary degree from UND

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Grand Forks, ND (WDAY TV) - The University of North Dakota today honored one of its most distinguished alumni, one who has perhaps gone further than any other UND alum.

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After two trips into outer space, Astronaut Karen Nyberg returned to Grand Forks to receive an honorary degree from the university.

Karen Nyberg says she hopes her success will inspire a future generation of UND grads to also reach for the stars.

Friday's ceremony is one of the largest august commencements ever for the university.

515 students are eligible to graduate.

Nyberg earned her bachelor's degree from UND in 1994.

She says she's never forgotten the lessons she learned in Grand Forks, lessons that helped take her career to new heights.

And she wants today's grads to know they have that chance, as well.

Karen Nyberg/Astronaut, UND Alum: “The perfect people, the perfect opportunities. The mechanical engineering program gave me exactly what I needed, the background I needed to become an astronaut.”

This isn't the first time Nyberg has brought her message to UND students. She delivered last year's summer commencement speech while on board the International Space Station.

She says the speech was one of her top priorities while in space.

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