NEWARK - Students taking part in commencement ceremonies at New Jersey Institute of Technology remembered a slain classmate.

Joseph Micalizzi was posthumously awarded a degree during ceremonies held Tuesday at the Prudential Center in Newark.

The 23-year-old Freehold resident was killed in the early morning hours of May 2 after two men broke into the Tau Kappa Epsilon Fraternity house. Micalizzi was reportedly killed when he confronted the two men.

Nafee Cotman, 18 and Taquan Harris, 22, were charged several days later in connection with the murder. Both pleaded not guilty to the charges during an inital court appearance Tuesday.

Micalizzi was a mechanical engineering major who had made the dean’s list last fall.

The fraternity house is across the street from the Rutgers-Newark campus, near where Rutgers student Shani Patel was shot and killed last month.