He’s a good boy – and now, he’s an honorary graduate of Clarkson University too.

Griffin Hawley, the Golden Retriever service dog of Brittany L. Hawley ’19, was awarded an honorary diploma for his “extraordinary contributions to student success” at Clarkson's December Recognition Ceremony on December 15. Clarkson President Tony Collins awarded Brittany and Griffin their diplomas at the ceremony. 

Clarkson Gives Service Dog Honorary Diploma

Clarkson welcomes service animals trained to assist people in all aspects of education, research, and campus life. The Board of Trustees recognized that Griffin has demonstrated extraordinary effort, steadfast commitment, and diligent dedication to the well-being and student success of his owner Brittany. 

The two have pursued 100 percent together a graduate degree in Occupational Therapy attending all the same classes, lectures, faculty appointments, group study sessions, social activities, research projects, and clinical experiences. Saturday acknowledged Griffin as an equal member of the Clarkson Golden Knights family. 

See Griffin's Honorary Diploma

Griffin’s accomplishment and photos went viral over the weekend, drawing hundreds of comments from Clarkson alums (“Hey, I went there… Good to know my school gives degrees to good boyes.”) and others (“I have an MBA and I still feel like this dog is more successful, he's also better looking.”)

One commenter even composed a poem:

“i am the dog - CONGRATULATE
cuz here i do the GRADUATE !
with human fren, went thru the classes
this degree - it proves i passes!
i wear de gown n mortar board
i cross the stage - receive award
my girl - she ready for employ
am service dog - the GOODEST BOY”
(thank you, SchnoodleDoodleDo, whoever you are...)

The graduates were also covered by NBC Nightly News, Inside Edition, Good Morning America, CBS News, and many other national outlets. 

Brittany and Griffin and 122 other students received their undergraduate and graduate diplomas during Saturday’s recognition ceremony.

Read the Associated Press story about Griffin and Brittany. 

All photos by University Photographer Steve Jacobs (sjacobs@clarkson.edu). 
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