On May 11th, 2018, 906 graduates became part of Northwestern State University’s on-going group of distinguished alumni who are making advancements in their respective fields across the country.
Graduation day was comprised of morning and afternoon services, with special aspects accompanying each ceremony.
The morning program included the presentation of a posthumous degree to Orlando Enrique Gonzales Trucco, a student who passed away two weeks prior to graduation. During the afternoon program, the Class of 1968 received a special second diploma, and commissioned officers took their oath.
In an open letter, NSU President Chris Maggio congratulated the graduates and stressed the historic ranking they were entering.
“You are now part of a special group of more than 75,000 Northwestern alumni in all 50 states,” Maggio told them. He went on to say, “I know your future is bright as you seek to make a positive difference in your chosen field.”
The graduates with the highest grade point average from each respective college sat on stage during the commencements. Former Lady of the Bracelet Maria Rome was shocked to learn that she held the highest GPA in the Gallaspy Family College of Education and Human Development out of 147 graduates.
“I felt honored to receive that recognition,” Rome said. “Leading in my college and sitting on the stage during commencement was surreal. I always imagined myself sitting in the crowd, excitedly waiting to receive my well-deserved diploma, but never did I imagine I would be on the stage. It was very cool to say the least.”
Katie Buttner graduated cum laude, an accolade given to graduates earning a 3.50-3.69 GPA, and received her Bachelor of Science in psychology. She will be attending the University of West Florida in the fall to pursue a master’s degree in Industrial/Organizational psychology.
Buttner advises incoming freshman to “be as involved as you can and work as hard as you can to make the most of your college experience.”
While NSU offers many extra-curricular activities to be a part of, Rome hopes students remember to keep school at the forefront.
“[Students should] take advantage of the library, the tutors and the professors,” Rome said. “NSU’s dedication to student success is one reason I love this university, and if students take advantage of all of the academic opportunities allotted to them they will truly be successful!”