The former student was posthumously awarded the degree, with his brother and sister accepting on his behalf.
Timothy Cole was a Texas Tech student when he was arrested and convicted of rape in 1986, dying in prison in 1999. Ten years later, DNA evidence exonerated Cole, and then-Gov. Rick Perry pardoned him in 2010.
Cole was posthumously awarded a degree from Texas Tech on Friday (May 15) with his brother, Cory Session, and sister, Karen Kennard, accepting the award on their brother's behalf.
Texas Tech President M. Duane Nellis and Chancellor Robert Duncan delivered remarks at the ceremony, which featured a video tribute to Cole. Jeff Blackburn, the founder and chief counsel for the Innocence Project of Texas, also spoke at the ceremony.