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Class of 2020 graduates in virtual ceremony

Class of 2020 graduates in virtual ceremony

    05.08.20 | Academics

    Southern Wesleyan University held a virtual graduation, streamed online May 8, to honor the graduates of 2020.

    Watch the full ceremony

    Addressing the graduates in the video, Southern Wesleyan University President, Dr. Todd Voss said this pandemic has become “personal to each of us.”

    “This may in fact be a life altering experience for all of us, but we are Warriors. While this is a moment in time, we will not accept that this moment will define our future. We hold onto something so much greater and we know the secret that the world has long forgotten – our God is faithful, our God is never surprised, and our God is with us celebrating in this commencement today,” Voss said. “While delivered remotely, this day has not lost its importance for this university. We’re pleased to have our family members and friends and of our graduates joining us today – while virtually, it’s important for all of us.”

    “It’s not exactly the way any of us have planned, but there’s still so much to celebrate,” said graduate Jami Wright, who has served this year as Student Government Association president and student chaplain. “While each and every one of us had a different experience during our first few moments at Southern Wesleyan, all of us have one thing in common – we all chose to spend the next few years working hard to get a degree at a university that loves us and cares for each and every individual who steps on campus. In this unprecedented season we are in, it is our prayer here at SWU that you will continue to grow in your faith and let God work in your life. Living in the unknown can be scary, but in these moments of celebration, let us praise the one who walks with us through it all.”

    In his commencement address, Rev. Heath Mullikin, director of alumni relations and a 1997 Southern Wesleyan graduate, congratulated the 2020 graduates, saying, “You have persevered through this unprecedented season to achieve this great accomplishment. You didn’t quit, you didn’t surrender, you didn’t ‘tap out’,” said Mullikin, reflecting on a term used by professional wrestlers pinned by an opponent, calling out in pain for a timeout. Mullikin related the biblical story of another wrestling match, in which Jacob wrestled with God, but persevered, and God blessed him and named him “Israel.”

    “In this moment Jacob goes from a guy who’s had to fight for himself to a guy who has God on his side, someone who God is going to fight for. As you transition into the next season of life, I want you to remember that you are not alone. When the world comes against you and you want to tap out, you are not by yourself. God will fight for you. Now there’s an entire famly of Warriors who will fight for you and cheer you on in the good times and the bad.”

    To the 2020 graduates, Mullikin said, “You could’ve tapped out, you could’ve quit this semester – but you didn’t – you’ve shown that you have what it takes.”

    Ceremony highlights included a prelude, played by Devon Broome, Piper with City of Greenville Pipes and Drums and Southern Wesleyan’s associate vice president for finance and Controller. Reverend Ken Dill, associate vice president for spiritual life and university chaplain, gave the invocation and benediction. Rev. Scott Williams, Coordinator of Faith-Based Learning, led in a scripture reading from Psalm 121.

    Special music, “Be Thou My Vision,” was sung by Desha Martin, Ashley Melendez, Wes Pate and Michaela Wickham. Dr. April White Pugh, provost and vice president for academic affairs, introduced Mullikin as the commencement speaker. Following the commencement address, Pugh, along with Janice Hartsoe, university registrar, presented the graduates. President Voss conferred degrees upon the graduates.

    The 2020 graduates, listed by their hometown, are:

    Abbeville, S.C.

    Josie Edwards, Bachelor of Science in Psychology

    Aiken, S.C.

    Takia James, Associate of Arts in General Studies; Preston Jones, Bachelor of Science in Special Education

    Anderson, S.C.

    Samantha Colman, Master of Education in Administration and Supervision; Tyler Fuller, Bachelor of Arts in Media Communication; Amy Merck, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration; Hannah Shilhanek, Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education; Grayson Smith, Master of Business Administration                                    

    Asheboro, N.C.

    Landon Davis, Bachelor of Arts in Religion

    Belvidere, N.C.

    Kayla Parks, Bachelor of Science in Biology Education      

    Big Flats, N.Y.                                                                                   

    Megan Pickering, Bachelor of Science in Human Services               

    Blythewood, S.C.                            

    Tammy Mancuso, Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood and Family Studies                        

    Boiling Springs, S.C.

    Drayden Ray, Bachelor of Science in Biology                                        

    Bonneau, S.C.

    Kali Berrigan, Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science                      

    Bradley, S.C.

    Suzanne Larsen, Master of Education in Administration and Supervision

    Burlington, N.C.

    Timothy Agner, Bachelor of Arts in Religion

    Calhoun Falls, S.C.

    Carra Tyson, Bachelor of Science in Human Services        

    Camden, S.C.

    Benjamin Watts, Bachelor of Science in Biology                 

    Campobello, S.C.

    Andrea Howell, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration  

    Cape Coral, Fla.

    Jannai Maxwell, Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science                 

    Carthage, N.C.

    Katelynn Cook, Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education

    Central, S.C.

    Hanan Balawi, Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education; Chyna Cannon, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration; Houston Childress, Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science; Kaitlyn Fox, Bachelor of Arts in Media Communication; Johnathon Friar, Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science; Alyssa Harding, Bachelor of Science in Psychology; Anna Martin, Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education; Thomas Nielsen, Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science; Gregory Pilgrim, Associate of Arts in General Studies; Chasity Rose, Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education; Madison Ryza, Bachelor of Science in Human Services; Matthew Thorpe, Master of Science in Management and Leadership; Jami Wright, Bachelor of Arts in Religion; Haesu Yoon, Bachelor of Arts in Religion

    Centerville, Md.

    Devin Patrick, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration      

    Charleston, S.C.

    Alexis Thompson, Bachelor of Science in Physical Education; Allison Wilson, Master of Education in Administration and Supervision       

    Clearwater, S.C.               

    Melissa Sims, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration      

    Clemson, S.C.                   

    Kimberley Boyer, Bachelor of Science in Nursing; Meredith Gaskin, Associate of Arts in General Studies

    Clinton, S.C.

    Keuntrai Robinson, Bachelor of Science in Recreation and Sport Management

    Colorado Springs, Colo.

    Sawyer Price, Bachelor of Arts in Media Communication

    Columbia, S.C.

    Bethanie Alongi, Associate of Arts in General Studies; Christy Brown, Master of Education in Administration and Supervision; Rashawne Coates, Master of Education in Administration and Supervision; Nathan Coonce, Bachelor of Arts in Religion; Cathy Hiller, Bachelor of Science in Human Services; Dwayne Ismail, Master of Business Administration; Renee Johnson, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration                 

    Crossville, Tenn.

    Diego Poore, Bachelor of Science in Recreation and Sport Management

    Daleville, Va.

    Logan Ferrell, Bachelor of Arts in Religion                                             

    Easley, S.C.

    Ragan Bayne, Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice; Brandon Bodiford, Associate of Arts in General Studies; Monty Broome, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration; Nadja Brown, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration; Melissa Craven, Bachelor of Science in Human Services; Brent Dickard, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration; Christopher Dillard, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration; Monica Espinoza, Master of Science in Management and Leadership; Anna Marie Garrett, Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice; Ryan Israel, Bachelor of Science in Psychology; Christopher Reid, Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice; Amanda Thompson, Master of Education in Administration and Supervision; Emily Wohlever, Bachelor of Science in Special Education

    Edmond, Okla.

    Emily Floyd, Bachelor of Science in Biology                                           

    Elgin, S.C.

    Christi Bigony, Master of Education in Administration and Supervision; Lakeisha Lawrence, Master of Education in Administration and Supervision

    Etowah, N.C.

    Ian Keay, Bachelor of Science in Applied Computer Science

    Fair Play, S.C.

    David Burns, Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice                         

    Florence, S.C.

    Patrick Moses, Bachelor of Science in Biology; Bryson Williams, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration                                    

    Fort Mill, S.C.

    Cameron Holmes, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration

    Fountain Inn, S.C.

    Jennifer Pence, Associate of Arts in General Studies                        

    Gaffney, S.C.

    Darrel Stamper, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration

    Gilbert, S.C.

    Amber Hawkins, Bachelor of Science in Nursing                                 

    Greenville, S.C.

    Michelle Albrecht, Master of Business Administration; Katherine Ibanez, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration; Kaleb Jackson, Bachelor of Science in Recreation and Sport Management; Isaiah Kupec, Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems; Kennedy Lowrance, Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education; Ashley McClary, Master of Education in Classroom Leadership; Jennifer Moreno-Ortiz, Bachelor of Science in Human Services; Henry Moulder, Master of Business Administration; William Shepherd, Bachelor of Arts in Religion; Andrew Van Norden, Bachelor of Science in Social Science     

    Greenwood, S.C.

    Jamaul Covington, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration

    Greer, S.C.

    Kevin Parra, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration

    Grovetown, Ga.

    Alexandra Preston, Master of Business Administration   

    Hartsville, S.C.

    Addesha Martin, Bachelor of Arts in Music                           

    Hephzibah, Ga.

    Shannon Cooper, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration                               

    High Point, N.C.

    Joshua Johnson, Bachelor of Arts in Media Communication          

    Hopkins, S.C.

    Gail Pearson, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration

    Huntington, W.V.

    Ainsley Pruitt, Bachelor of Science in Human Services     

    Indian Trail, N.C.

    John Bogert, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration

    Irmo, S.C.

    Kyle Cook-McCrary, Bachelor of Arts in Religion                                                 

    Iva, S.C.

    Shelby King, Bachelor of Science in Human Services; Cheyene Richey, Bachelor of Science in Human Services                        

    Jacksonville, Fla.

    Kayla Achenbach, Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice               

    Kannapolis, N.C.

    Rebecca Reese, Bachelor of Arts in English; Zachary Wheeler, Bachelor of Arts in Religion               

    Kansas City, Kan.

    Mercedes Stone, Bachelor of Science in Human Services               

    Kings Mountain, N.C.

    Wesley Henson, Bachelor of Arts in Religion

    Lakeland, Fla.

    Rachel Curtis, Bachelor of Science in Psychology               

    Laurens, S.C.

    Makaila Irby, Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education    

    Lexington, S.C.

    Carl Brygger, Bachelor of Science in Biology; Anthony Flowers, Master of Education in Administration and Supervision; Katherine Spaugh, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration                                                                            

    Liberty, S.C.

    Madalynn Crawford, Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood and Family Studies; Taylor Hopkins, Bachelor of Science in Biology; Kelvin Hyde, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration; Monica Keever, Bachelor of Science in Biology; Amy Lunsford, Bachelor of Science in Psychology; Cynthia Morgan, Associate of Arts in General Studies; Sydney Rhodes, Bachelor of Science in Psychology

    Lyman, S.C.

    Julie McVickers, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration

    Lynchburg, S.C.                                                                

    Noah Zion, Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice                            

    Marion, Ind.

    Hayden Peters, Bachelor of Science in Psychology                             

    Matthews, N.C.

    Emily Anderson, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration                 

    Mauldin, S.C.

    Ronald  Holsey, Associate of Arts in General Studies                        

    Moncks Corner, S.C.

    Theresa Dingle-McDuffie, Master of Business Administration       

    North, S.C.

    Hunter Diamond, Associate of Arts in General Studies    

    Orangeburg, S.C.

    Herman Jamison, Master of Education in Administration and Supervision

    Orlando, Fla.

    Lyric King, Bachelor of Science in Human Services                                             

    Peekskill, N.Y.

    Lisana Burnett, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration   

    Pelzer, S.C.

    Avery Jenkins, Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice                      

    Pendleton, S.C.

    Traci Harrell, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration; Emily Moline, Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems; Jahanna Schwab, Bachelor of Arts in English                             

    Petersburg, Mich.

    Tanner  Glass, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration     

    Pickens, S.C.

    Brett Brezeale, Bachelor of Science in Math Education; Nicole Casey, Bachelor of Arts in Religion; Phillip Cole, Bachelor of Arts in History; Charlesie Duncan, Bachelor of Science in Nursing; Mary Javdan-Inalloo, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration; Riley Nicholson, Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education, Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education; Emily Service, Bachelor of Arts in Religion, Bachelor of Arts in Music; Zoe Stanley, Bachelor of Science in Human Services          

    Rock Hill, S.C.

    Denisha Hall, Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science; Emily Howe, Master of Science in Management and Leadership; Clenzo Ross, Bachelor of Science in Social Science; Armani Truesdale, Bachelor of Science in Human Services; Lavette Walden, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration

    Salem, S.C.

    Hazel Tilson, Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education            

    Salisbury, Md.

    Evan Bier, Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science

    Sandy Springs, S.C.

    Megan  Chapman, Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood and Family Studies                                                                       

    Sanford, N.C.

    Elizabeth Sanger, Bachelor of Arts in Religion      

    Seneca, S.C.

    Tyler Abercrombie, Bachelor of Science in Physical Education; Miranda Alexander, Bachelor of Arts in English; Ethan Ekback, Bachelor of Science in Mathematics; Candace Holbrooks, Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education, Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education; Rebecca Reed, Bachelor of Arts in Music Education

    Shirley, N.Y.      

    Ashley Melendez, Bachelor of Science in Psychology       

    Simpsonville, S.C.

    Sarah Jane Edney, Master of Business Administration; Katherine Gillespie, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration; David Jerman, Bachelor of Science in Human Services; Martin Pahila, Bachelor of Science in Biology               

    Six Mile, S.C.

    Carley Pace, Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education

    Slidell, La.

    Riley Herdliska, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration  

    Spartanburg, S.C.

    Shonquez Caldwell, Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice; Mary Deguzman-Paul, Master of Education in Administration and Supervision; Andrew Ruff, Bachelor of Science in Human Services      

    Summerville, S.C.

    Abriana Pemberton, Bachelor of Science in Psychology  

    Tallahassee, Fla.

    Leonard Holmes, Bachelor of Arts in Media Communication

    Tamassee, S.C.

    Noel Davis, Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education; Sandra Hogan, Bachelor of Science in Human Services              

    Taylors, S.C.                                                                                      

    Adriane Hammond, Bachelor of Science in Human Services; Sara Hix, Master of Business Administration; Caroline Therrell, Bachelor of Arts in History

    Thomasville, N.C.

    Meghan Bowen, Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education     

    Townville, S.C.

    Kimberly Meredith, Bachelor of Science in Special Education       

    Travelers Rest, S.C.        

    Kyle Brookshire, Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice                                  

    Villa Rica, Ga.                                                                   

    Emily Waters, Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice                      

    Walhalla, S.C.

    Kiernan Gordon, Bachelor of Science in Physical Education; Stephanie Howell, Bachelor of Arts in History; Nancy Jimenez, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration                

    Waxhaw, N.C.

    Ashley Romanowski, Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice         

    West Columbia, S.C.      

    James Jones, Associate of Arts in General Studies; Paris West, Bachelor of Science in Social Science                                                           

    West Union, S.C.

    Sabrina Bryant, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration; Kaitlyn Keeler, Master of Education in Administration and Supervision

    Westminster, S.C.

    Jessica Holbrooks, Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood and Family Studies; Amanda Marcengill, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration; Vickie Rogers, Associate of Arts in General Studies

    Williamsburg, Va.

    Shei Boren, Bachelor of Science in Special Education       

    Williamston, S.C.

    Brittany Croney, Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood and Family Studies; April Duncan, Bachelor of Science in Human Services; Skylar Taylor, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration    

    Williston, S.C.

    Summer Mead, Associate of Arts in General Studies                        

    Windsor, S.C.    

    LaToya Bates, Master of Science in Management and Leadership              

    Winston-Salem, N.C.

    Alyssa Henry, Bachelor of Arts in English; Allen Steindel, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration

    York, S.C.

    Jordan McDaniel, Bachelor of Science in Psychology        

    Graduates who are military service personnel or veterans are as follows:

    Air Force: Jamaul Covington, Greenwood, S.C.; Darrel Stamper, Gaffney, S.C.

    Army: James Jones, West Columbia, S.C.

    Marines: Monty Broome, Easley, S.C.; Shonquez Caldwell, Spartanburg, S.C.; Christopher Dillard, Easley, S.C.        

    Southern Wesleyan University is a Christ-centered, student-focused learning community devoted to transforming lives by challenging students to be dedicated scholars and servant-leaders who impact the world for Christ. For details about degree programs, go online to swu.edu.

    Southern Wesleyan University is a Christ-centered, student-focused learning community devoted to transforming lives by challenging students to be dedicated scholars and servant-leaders who impact the world for Christ. For details about degree programs, go online to swu.edu.

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