Graduates urged to walk forward in faith

May 7, 2011

PLAINVIEW – Garrett Breazeale summed up perfectly the typical feelings of the soon-to-be college graduate.

“We are teetering on a thin line between college and the real world. How much I have looked forward to this day, but now that I’m here, I want to run backwards,” he said, addressing his fellow graduates at the spring commencement ceremony at Wayland Baptist University.

Breazeale said while the safety and comfort of the Wayland family was hard to leave, he graduated Saturday knowing he had the tools and friends to be confident about the future, whatever it holds.

“We can walk forward in faith, trusting that there’s a plan for our lives built by the creator himself,” said Breazeale, a senior molecular biology major from Gladewater. “We are a generation capable of great things, especially with God behind us.” 

Brezeale urged his fellow graduates to stay in touch with friends, professors and others at Wayland that have created a firm foundation for life and to cherish the memories of their time at WBU.

In his brief charge to graduates, President Dr. Paul Armes encouraged graduates to embrace the day not as an ending, but as a new beginning as the term commencement implies, “because it’s the start of a new pilgrimage.”

“Don’t underestimate your power to change the world. Be what Jesus is calling you to be: salt and light and disciples,” he said. “I believe you will change our world in phenomenal ways.”

Dr. Armes and Dr. Claude Lusk, vice president for enrollment management, recognized six seniors as having the highest academic rank in their class. Each achieved a perfect 4.0 grade point average in their time at Wayland. Those honorees included Sarah Buckland, a theatre and English major from Weatherford; Devin De Loe, a religion and psychology major from Borger; Jacob Miser, a theatre major from Clarendon;  Amber Lea Phillips, a psychology major from Denton; and Rachel Rima, an economics and finance major from Perryton.

The ceremony also featured participation by other graduating seniors, including  special music by Alexis Hall of Lockney, leading of the hymn by Allison Vetter of Big Lake; leading of the pledge by Nicole Taylor of South Fork, Colo.; reading of scripture by De Loe; and leading of the alma mater by Gunnar Tietge of Irving.

Graduates from the Plainview campus included the following, listed by degree and including major and hometown as well as any Latin honors if received:

Master of Arts in Counseling: Heather Dawn Dillard, Lubbock; Tiffiny A. Grant, Lubbock; Amy Kellison, Lockney; Shelby Mynea Kennedy, Breckenridge; Suzanne N. King, Muleshoe; Sharla Beth Jackson Knippa, Dimmitt; Whitney Lenore Scheef, Lubbock; and Jerod Daniel Wright, Lubbock.

Master of Business Administration: Amber Renee Barrera, health care administration, Crowell; Kelsey Lynette Beggs, international management, Muleshoe; Russell L. Melcher, health care administration, Amarillo; Rosa Maria Padilla, human resource management, Lockney; Maxine Westmoreland, general business, Amarillo.

Master of Christian Ministry: Lynn Aldrich Gray Jackson, Plainview; Frank Sikes, Lubbock.

Master of Education: Lara E. H. Adair, special education, Plainview; Donald C. Archer, educational administration, Amarillo; Gwendolyn Sloan Crabtree, higher education administration, Weatherford; Daniel Mark Fitzgerald, educational administration, Colorado Springs, Colo.; Kristen Ashley Johnson, higher education administration, Sudan; Paula Butler Lusk, elementary education certification, Plainview; Robert Moreno, Jr., elementary education certification, Plainview; Dawn Clark Mustian, educational administration, Plainview; Nancy Lynn Pirkey, secondary education certification, Plainview; Crystal DeeAnn Stahl, special education, Plainview; Aaron Gray Switzer, educational administration, Denton; Jeff Vanlandingham, special education, Lockney. 

Master of Public Administration: Brittani Brooke Brownlee, homeland security, Plainview; Timothy Mark Phillips, homeland security, Plainview; Michael Terrell Scott, Sr., government administration, Detroit, Mich.; Shara Kaye Chandler Scott, government administration, Muskogee, Okla.

Bachelor of Arts with Honors: David McClung, psychology, Sundown, magna cum laude; Kristi Lynn Morris Young, justice administration, Frisco.

Bachelor of Science with Honors: Garrett Mikel Breazeale, molecular biology, Gladewater, magna cum laude.

Bachelor of Applied Science: Kristine C. Posey, Londonderry, N.H.; Tawnya L. Riney, Plainview; Catherine Rojas, Plainview; Jessica Mona Walker, Bryan; Shantilly Bridgette Wall, Shallowater; and Daniel Womack, Katy.

Bachelor of Arts: Amanda Michelle Allen, theatre education, Merkel, summa cum laude; Daniel Arnold, art, Waxahachie; MaryBeth Arnold Aycock, Spanish education, Waxahachie, summa cum laude; Sarah Jean Buckland, theatre/English, Weatherford, summa cum laude; Joshua Allen Burgett, religion, Shallowater; Martin Calzada, Spanish/business administration, Hale Center; Devin Austin De Loe, religion/psychology, Borger, summa cum laude; Aaron Tyler deClet, business administration, Denver, Colo.; Ana Jean Edelstein, art, Arlington; Mark P. Edlin, general music, Pueblo, Colo.; Kimber Nicole Edwards, art, Plainview; Joshua L. Faucett, justice administration, Edgewood, N.M., cum laude; Ashley Dawn Hardage, English/business administration, Plainview, cum laude; John Hemingway, psychology, Keller; Courtney Gail Hickman, general music, Perryton; Eric Michael Kaminski, justice administration, Roseville, Mich.; Andrew Dale Lancaster, religion, Earth; Meredith Ann Maddux, English, Chico; Cornelius Magallan, criminal justice, Hale Center; Chantell S. Mazone, psychology, Pecos; Jacob Miser, theatre, Clarendon, summa cum laude; Jenee Brionne Norris, sociology, Pampa; Benjamin Ian Perkins, history/religion, Centennial, Colo., cum laude; Amber Lea Phillips, psychology, Denton, summa cum laude; Brenda Pulido, justice administration, Plainview; John David Redig, English/language arts, League City, magna cum laude; Doanh L. Sanders, art, Plainview; Bradley Sell, religious education/English, Clarendon, summa cum laude; Rachel Ann Steed, theatre, Plainview; Nicole Sarah Taylor, history, South Fork, Colo., summa cum laude; and Jessica Nicole Thornton, mass communication, Muleshoe.

Bachelor of Business Administration: Marisa Ann Aguilera, management/marketing, Levelland; Edward G. Allen, Jr., economics/finance, Mesquite; Carolee Bergil Castillo, accounting, Plainview; Zane Harrison Crook, management/marketing, Albuquerque; Joshua Anthony Fitchett, accounting, Sterling City; Sharon Rose Haney, business education, Spearman, cum laude; Angela Ruth Jackson, management/marketing, Tulia; Evelyn M. Jaime, business administration, Hale Center; Victor John LeMay, business administration, Uvalde; Michael Bruce Loppnow, management information systems, Cape Town, South Africa; Amanda Gail Martin, accounting, Farwell; Neeca McKay Moody, management/marketing, Abilene; Andrew Jonathan Phillips, accounting, El Paso; Rachel Amanda Rima, economics/finance, Perryton, summa cum laude; Mario Rico Jacque Scott, management/marketing, Bridgetown, Barbados; Brendon Drake Trent, economics/finance, Dumas; Jessen Carol Tucker, management/marketing, Fort Sumner, N.M.; and Anika Voigt, international management, Potsdam, Germany. 

Bachelor of Christian Ministry: Francisco Villarreal, Christian studies, Plainview.

Bachelor of Music: Alexis Marie Hall, vocal performance, Lockney, magna cum laude; Melanie Ruth Hester, keyboard performance, Brownfield, summa cum laude; Gunnar Lee Matthew Tietge, music education, Irving, magna cum laude; and Allison Christen Vetter, music education, Big Lake, cum laude.

Bachelor of Science: Tyler Bray Archer, exercise and sport science, Lamesa; William Calvin Bass, fitness management, Plainview; Crystal Marie Campos, justice administration/psychology, Petersburg; Hopie Chapa, physical education, Plainview; Lyndsay Brooke Cross, sociology, Plainview; Allison Featherston, psychology, Plainview; David Wayne Gary II, molecular biology, Plainview; Susana Fehr Guenthere, mathematics education, O’Donnell; Haley Michelle Hill, exercise and sport science education, San Angelo, summa cum laude; Jacob Matthew Hinojosa, biological sciences, Plainview; Austin John Howard, molecular biology, Clarendon, cum laude; Jessica Leigh Howard, molecular biology, Clarendon; Robert Shawn Langston, exercise and sport science education, Plainview; Desiree Michelle Luevano, molecular biology, El Paso; Haven Quade Martin, fitness management, Sterling City; Francis Cole Martinson, exercise and sport science, Throckmorton; Staci Murphree, exercise and sport science education, Friona; Rosemary Lee Ribera, molecular biology, Canyon; and Tana Denise Saul, biological sciences, Lockney.

Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies: Eleshia Leshea Brown, elementary education, Stephenville; Jamie Mae Clark, elementary education, Friona, magna cum laude; Ashley Niccole Cox, elementary education, Stanton, cum laude; Christina Helsley, elementary education, Big Spring; Robert J. Hon, middle school mathematics, El Paso; D’Anna Kay Kellum, elementary education, Plainview; Sarah Nichole Langford, elementary education, Pampa; Joe Paul Linebarger II, middle school mathematics, Snyder; Amy Leigh Martin, elementary education, Plainview; Bethany Grace Peterson, elementary education, Gruver, summa cum laude; and Caitlin Marie Vaughan, elementary education, Plainview, magna cum laude.

Bachelor of Science in Occupational Education: Felipe Azua, human services, Plainview; Jesus Hernandez, business administration, Sierra Vista, Ariz.; Clorene Laree McDonald, business administration, Plainview; Andrew James Novak, business administration, Plainview; Rodger Dean Roberts, Jr., business administration, Crowley.

Associate of Applied Science: Thomas Kyle Simpson, justice administration, Rule.