UPDATE: MTSU’s Spring 2022 Start – An Exciting Time For 2022 Graduates

(MURFREESBORO, TN) The 2,474 fresh graduates of Middle Tennessee State University’s first class of 2022 are on their way to adventures big and small, jubilantly accepting their hard-earned college degrees on Saturday, May 7, during a day launch ceremonies marked by three guests who praised their determination.

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“Nothing should hold back the size and shape of your dreams. It is our talent for imagination and creativity that makes us human,” Bahamas Prime Minister Philip Edward Davis said, speaking to the first group of newly minted MTSU alumni at the morning commencement ceremony for Jones College of Business, College of Education and University College.

“…The most valuable knowledge you gain here is the importance of keeping your mind open and thinking critically. None of us can afford to be complacent; we have to keep learning. So let us resolve, you and I, to make the most of the gift of imagination and creativity and never let the fears or limitations of others overwhelm our sense of what is possible for us and for our countries.

Guest speaker Christine Karbowiak, Vice Chairman of the Board of MTSU and retired executive of Bridgestone Americas, praised the graduates’ ability to meet unprecedented challenges while focusing on life-changing opportunities.

“…Plans almost never turn out exactly the way we want, and thank the stars for that,” she told the College of Behavioral and Health Sciences afternoon graduates and from the College of Liberal Arts. “Real life is so much more interesting than the plans.

“In my experience, people who believe in it and embrace it, those who are willing to pivot in the face of opportunity or challenge, find the most success and satisfaction on the road to the future. Not only that, they end up being deeply grateful for all those detours.

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MTSU Graduation – Continued…

Nashville graduate resident Ben Weber’s decision to embark on a new career came when coronavirus restrictions put his career as a live audio engineer on hold.

“I’ve always loved children and come from a family of educators,” the Laurel, Mississippi native said. “It was encouraging to know that I could get my teaching license and my master’s degree through the program in two years, and, in the blink of an eye, here I am.”

Now certified to teach kindergarten through fifth grade with a new master’s degree in education from the College of Education, Weber will look to schools in the Nashville and Murfreesboro area in hopes of landing a job teaching fourth or fifth grade. year. He said he was proud of the knowledge and skills he gained at MTSU — and the fond memories, too.

“Beginning is the culmination of many hours of work and stress, new relationships and experiences, smiles and tears, long nights and goal achievement,” he said. “I love the program’s focus on personal creativity. I especially enjoyed dressing up as Buzz Aldrin for a social studies lesson on the moon landings.

Combine classroom and real-world experiences

MTSU’s Spring Class of 2022 included 2,041 undergraduate students and 433 graduate students graduating Saturday. The second figure included 389 master’s degrees, 25 education specialization degrees and 19 doctorates, as well as 18 graduate students who received certificates for their graduate studies.

At the end of the day, MTSU reached a new milestone: more than 175,000 degrees conferred since its founding in 1911. Ceremonies on May 7 put the total number of MTSU degrees earned at more than 175,820.

Franklin, Tennessee, native Cynthia Torres, a first-generation college student, aspires to use her new MTSU psychology degree from the College of Behavioral and Health Sciences as the foundation for a career as an addiction therapy counselor.

She is on her way to Regent University in Virginia Beach, Virginia to pursue a master’s degree with extensive skills already acquired through community service and her studies.

“I volunteer at the Tennessee Women’s Prison in Nashville,” said Torres, recipient of the 2021-22 Community Service Award from MTSU’s Office of Student Organizations and Services, as well as transfer and college scholarships. non-traditional studies.

“The focus of the program is inner healing and conflict resolution. I also teach the same program at a few different churches in the area (and) started a narrative therapy group at Franklin Christian Church.

Torres’ research for her University Honors College thesis, “Exploring Gender Differences in the Content and Frequency of Self-Talk,” may also play a role in her work with therapy clients.

“There have been few studies on gender differences in self-talk,” the afternoon graduate explained. “…That was very interesting information and will help me in addiction counseling because there are gender differences in addiction and recovery.”

MTSU Graduation Recap (video below)

Jared Frazier, a graduate of Spring Hill, Tennessee, earned his MTSU computer science degree summa cum laude — with highest honors — and is now heading to Bethesda, Maryland, for an internship at the National Institutes of Health Clinical Center.

Afterwards, Honors College Buchanan scholar and National Goldwater Scholarship recipient, who majored in chemistry, left for the Netherlands, where he was accepted into the Master of Computer Science program at the University of ‘Amsterdam.

Saturday’s milestone makes him grateful to the educators who helped guide his path.

“I am thrilled to graduate from MTSU, and it has been the greatest honor of my life to work with the esteemed faculty and staff,” he said.

Frazier specifically mentioned Laura Clippard, Honors College International Scholarships Coordinator; Jamie Burriss, Program Manager, Office of Research and Sponsored Programs; chemistry professors Mengliang Zhang and Greg Van Patten, who is also dean of the College of Basic and Applied Sciences; computer science professors Sal Barbosa and Josh Phillips and others “who have been integral to my current and future success”.

His resume also includes conducting National Science Foundation-funded research at the University of Michigan, co-founding MTSU’s student organization for the advancement of research; co-author of articles in five scientific journals; as Literature Editor for MTSU’s creative arts journal, Collage; and star in two MTSU Theater productions.

‘Have an outward focus’

Tim Graeff, a professor in MTSU’s Department of Marketing, recipient of the university’s 2021 Career Achievement Award and director of MTSU’s Office of Consumer Research, urged new graduates to think about what they consider successful.

Citing comments from Albert Einstein to Denzel Washington on the importance of seeking ways to serve others, Graeff told graduates of MTSU’s College of Basic and Applied Sciences and College of Media and Entertainment that looking to the exterior is the real key to success.

“If you expect it from others, you expect it from companies, will you expect it from yourself? Do you expect to be someone who is willing to give back, to be outward focused, to help others – to support, uplift and encourage others? Graeff asked the students.

“I hope so, because I believe that if you can focus on the outside throughout your life, if you can strive to help others, to give back and to support others, you will be safe. the right path to happiness and success.”

University President Sidney A. McPhee reminded new graduates and their supporters to pause and savor their accomplishments before taking on their new roles.

“We are very grateful that you are a member of this academic community and that you have chosen this university as the place to pursue your academic dreams,” he said.

“Enjoy this moment of excitement. … It is with great pleasure that we reward your commitment and academic achievement with these diplomas.

Graduate degree holders participated with their university college instead of a separate ceremony for the Graduate College.

McPhee also presented lecturer Davis and former Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam with honorary doctorates during the morning ceremony, recognizing their contributions to education.

MTSU’s official Spring 2022 commencement schedule, listing all graduates by college and providing more details on guest speakers, is available at https://bit.ly/MTSpring2022GradProgram.

MTSU’s 2022 summer semester classes begin Monday, May 16.

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