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Ohio University Eastern honors graduating class

Ohio University Eastern honored graduates at a Graduation Recognition Ceremony Thursday, May 2, 2024, in St. Clairsville, Ohio.

OHIO Eastern's Dean of Campus and Community Relations David Rohall warmly welcomed the graduates, proud parents, faculty, staff and community. He set the tone for the occasion by emphasizing the significance of the moment.

“Today, we gather to celebrate not only the culmination of years of hard work and dedication, but also the beginning of a new chapter in your lives," Rohall said. "But this day is not just about reflecting on the past - it's also about embracing the future. As you cross this stage tonight, you are being recognized as joining the esteemed ranks of the official Ohio University Association Bobcat Alumni Network. You are becoming part of a community that spans generations and continents, united by a shared commitment to excellence and a passion for making a difference in the world.”

Student speaker Shayla Schuster of Martins Ferry, Ohio, addressed the audience, sharing key moments from her personal academic journey that revealed her passion for education. 

“As I stand here on the stage ready to close a chapter of my life, I am filled with knowledge as I begin a new one,” Shuster said. “Throughout this journey, I have been guided by the wisdom and mentorship of experienced educators who have generously shared their knowledge and insights. Their guidance has been instrumental in shaping my approach to teaching and has provided me with a deep sense of purpose and passion for education.”

Schuster graduates with summa cum laude honors, earning a bachelor’s degree in early childhood and elementary education. After graduation, she plans to secure a teaching position near her hometown.

Ohio University Eastern alumna and recipient of the 2024 Furbee Award, Lova Ebbert, delivered the keynote address. Ebbert addressed the graduating class, sharing personal reflections as an OHIO Eastern alumna, parent, entrepreneur and community advocate. She encouraged graduates to strive for a positive impact in their professions.

“You may not change the whole wide world, but you can certainly change your world. Make your career more than just a paycheck,” Ebbert emphasized. “Our journeys may differ, but by striving to be our best selves and uplifting others, we can profoundly impact the lives of those around us in a positive manner.”

Schuster, Nicolas Nolan, Alyssa Betts, Addyson Terek, and Sierra Betts received the Outstanding Student Award in their fields of study.  These prestigious awards recognize students who have contributed holistically to not just their academic program, but also to the Eastern campus and surrounding community. These students maintain a high GPA, participate in various on-campus activities, and serve as role models for their fellow students.

James Casebolt, associate professor of Psychology, presented the graduation candidates.

Graduates included:

  • Associate Degrees: Ashley Alloway, Deanna Archer, Alexis Bennett, Abigail Howell, Meghan Shultz, Nancy Stewart, Elaina Swallow, and Riley White
  • Bachelor Degrees: Ashley Alloway, Tyler Bass, Alyssa Betts, Sierra Betts, Samantha Burkhart, Kory Bratton, Camyrn Case, Adam Davis, Kirsten Devine, Michael Grob, Katelyn Groves, Gage Harris, Julie Hendershot, Lyndsey Hennis, Cole Kazmirski, Kayla Kuri, Bailey Leach, Vanessa Leach, Laekynn Little, Allison Long, Samantha Miller, Hannah Nagy, Nicholas Nolan, Kaitlynn Patterson, Hayley Porter-Leasure, Cassie Ray, Misty Roberts, Brianna Ross, Melissa Rubel, Shayla Schuster, Carlye Sempirek, Sidne Sidon, Paige Smallridge, Mark Smith, Madisyn Stewart, Brandon Stipetich, Gary Stoffer, Addyson Terek, Destiny Tomich, Dylan Warrick, Robbin Watson, Kelsi Weaver, and Josh Wilson. 
May 2, 2024
Staff reports