A total of 291 students were candidates for graduation from Southwest Missouri State University-West Plains (SMSU-WP) during commencement ceremonies May 17 at West Plains Civic Center.
In addition, 48 students participated in commencement ceremonies for SMSU-Springfield's Academic Out-reach completion programs on the SMSU-WP campus. These students were candidates for three of the bachelor's and master's degree programs offered locally by Academic Outreach.
West Plains native and 37th Judicial Circuit Judge R. Jack Garrett gave the keynote address. Garrett, who graduated from West Plains High School in 1959, discussed the uniqueness of the education experience at SMSU-WP and how that experience changes graduates and the community in an address themed "What You Brought, What You Left and What You Will Take Away."
Members of the 2003 graduating class receiving SMSU-WP's association of arts in general studies degrees were Jessica Lynn Brazwell, Leslie A. Johnson, Birvon Lincoln Strong II, Sandra Dawn Warren and Sharon Elizabeth Weisz, all of Alton; Jessica Louise Gatewood of Brandsville; Joseph Michael Cushing, Kimberly Gail Davis, Etter Denise Kazen and Richard Justin Leitner all of Koshkonong; Delsa Dawn Meeker, Elizabeth Ann Ragsdale, and Marta Joy Underwood, all of Mammoth Spring; Elaine L. Hartsock and Tabatha Ann Murdock Honeycutt, both of Myrtle; Debbie Ann Donahue Cabrales, Nina Marie McKenzie Crase, Janet Sue Fisher, Stacey Lyn Miller Fruge, Jennifer Dawn Maddux Moore, Garrett J. Poulette and Jennifer Lynn Taylor, all of Thayer.
Receiving the association of science in nursing degree included Lajunia S. Johnson and Cindy A. (Sheets) Tusher, both of Alton, and Kimberly Ann Hartness of Mammoth Spring.
Receiving the associate of applied science in business accounting degree were Mia Shawntel Goin and Angela L. McGhee Johnson, both of Koshkonong.
Students receiving the associate of applied science in computer technology degree with emphasis in computer applications and computer technical support included Sara Dawn Martin of Thayer.
Receiving the bachelor of science in elementary education were Ronda Davis of Koshkonong; Marta Underwood of Mammoth Spring; and Robin Ary, Amanda Hall, April Mills and Mary Schlernitzauer, all of Thayer.
Williams Baptist College at Walnut Ridge awarded degrees to 89 graduates during its 2003 commencement exercises May 3.
Williams graduates from north Arkansas include: Amber Clinkingbeard of Calico Rock, Tonya Staggs of Cave City, Laura Springer of Cherokee Village, Nathan Miller and Ginger Shelton, both of Melbourne, and Steven Singleton of Mount Pleasant.
A capacity crowd of over 1,200 people was on hand for the graduation ceremony in WBC's Southerland-Mabee Center.
The commencement address was delivered by Dr. Joann Goatcher, a retired medical missionary and member of the Williams board of trustees.
A total of 341 students received degrees May 10 from Henderson State University at Arkadelphia.
John William Baker III and Jeffrey Thomas McLeran, both of Cherokee Village, received bachelor of science degrees.
Judge Gary M. Arnold of Benton and Dr. Patricia Callaway Daniel of Salt Lake City were inducted as distinguished alumni and addressed the commencement audience.
The College of Agriculture at Arkansas State University recognized graduating seniors, including Sach D. Oliver, of Viola, at a recent honors ceremony. Oliver was recognized as most outstanding in the agriculture business programs, according to Dr. Cal Shumway, interim dean of the college.
The graduating senior awards are presented each year, based on scholarship, leadership and service to the department.