Wayland holds commencement Saturday afternoon

December 13, 2014

PLAINVIEW – Lorenzo Dolphus made his way to the podium to give the student address during Saturday afternoon’s commencement exercises at Wayland Baptist University.

“I remember when I first looked into your eyes …” he said. “Oh, that’s from my (wedding) vows.”

Not only was Dolphus graduating Saturday afternoon, but he and his fiancée, Janelle Durrough, who was also dressed in cap and gown for Saturday’s graduation, were leaving the ceremony to attend their wedding.

As Dolphus switched speeches, to the laughter of the crowd, he recalled first coming to Wayland four years ago and doing all the things his mother told him not to do: going swimming without waiting an hour after eating, riding his bike with no helmet and eating cereal for breakfast, lunch and supper, only to find out he was lactose intolerant.

But Dolphus did much more while he was at Wayland. He was a highly decorated, 16-time All-America track athlete, and he graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Exercise and Sport Science Education.

With his time on Saturday, Dolphus challenged his fellow graduates to be a light and make a difference in the world. He pointed to all those late-night movies, watching The Avengers and Harry Potter where “regular” people made a difference in their world.

Dolphus quoted 1 Peter 4:10 that states, “Each of you have received a gift, use it to serve one another as good stewards of God’s varied grace.” (ESV) He then challenged his classmates to use their gifts to make a difference in their world.

“There are people here at Wayland who have a variety of majors and different abilities that degrees can’t even measure,” he said. “The world needs a light and all of us can be lights.

“Find something you are passionate about and make a difference.”

Wayland Baptist University President Dr. Paul Armes gave a brief charge to the graduates, echoing what Dolphus had to say.

“Students, you do have incredible potential to change your world,” Armes said. “Our prayer for you is that you will always know your place in God’s plan and that you will follow that plan with every single bit of strength that is within you.”

Dolphus then joined his classmates in receiving their diplomas.

Master of Arts in Counseling: Angela Alexander, Canyon; Lora Baggerman, Pampa; Sandra Billington, Levelland; Karen Harmon, Plainview; Kaylee Hendriex, Midland; Matthew Hicks, Lubbock; Paige Jones, Amarillo; Kayla Kelly, Austin; Trang Lam, Chicago; Angela Lutz, Muleshoe; Ashlie Martin, Farwell; Michelle Melvin, Lubbock; Shawn Pebsworth, Shallowater; Tiffany Seaton, Summerfield; Melissa Shropshire, Lubbock; Tameka Thompson, Amarillo; Jessica Velasquez, Lubbock; Michea Wilcox, Arlington

Master of Arts in History: Bryan Hill, Llano

Master of Arts in Management: Melanie Castro, Amarillo; Jeanette Mason, Fleetwood, N.Y.

Master of Business Administration: Jerry Askins, Lubbock; Jonathan Galchik, Sierra Vista, Ariz.; Sandra Ghormley, Soldotna, Ark.; Mindy Howard, Amarillo; Luke Riddle, Borer; David Rodriguez, Lubbock

Master of Education: Anessa Golden, Artesia, N.M.; Dana Gose, Tucson, Ariz.; Amber Graves, Lockney; Louis Howell, III, Lubbock; Charbra Lee, Hart; Kristin Nichols, Taos, N.M.; Melissa Rhea, Amarillo

Master of Science: Connie Koeppen, Sundown

Bachelor of Applied Science: Araceli Chavez, Plainview; Gortia Ferguson, The Forest, Exuma, Bahamas; Gary Frank, Jr., Galesburg, Il.; Natasha Gay, Denver, Colo.; Jeffery Josephs, St. Andrew, Jamaica; David Lara, Jr., Plainview; Jessica Rea, Lubbock; April Sprowls, Chicago; Monica Thompson, Plainview

Bachelor of Arts: Jaclyn Alford, Littlefield; Blair Carter, Montrose, Colo.; Rebecca Davis, Roswell, N.M.; Jeremy Ellison, Memphis, Tenn.; Matthew Evans, Marble Falls; Joshua Faupel, El Paso; Coleman Scroggins, Tulia; Joanna Shutts, Borger; Elizabeth Solberg, Plainview; Ginny Staton, Perryton

Bachelor of Business Administration: Janelle Durrough, Altus, Okla.; Rosaura Luevano, Plainview; Christie Mooney, Pflugerville; Stacie Stoerner, Plainview; Guillermo Villarreal, El Paso

Bachelor of Fine Arts: Jonathan Riddle, Houston

Bachelor of Music: Derick Rautbort, Brownfield; David Rogers, Jr., Tulia; Kaylie Young, Lubbock

Bachelor of Science: Joshua Bailey, Lovington, N.M.; Katelyn Barnes, Plainview; Chyna Calloway, Houston; James Carthel, Plainview; Francisco DeLeon, El Paso; Cody Detwiler, Dalhart; Lorenzo Dolphus, Houston; Jessica Hall, Muleshoe; Christopher Hart, Katy; Andrew Morales, Detroit, Mich.; Ashton Pedigo, Canyon; Melissa Perez, Plainview; Manuel Rocha, San Antonio; Lakeshia Walton, Borger

Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies: Brian Allen, Mesquite; Morgan Castillo, Plainview; Kayla Gunn, Colorado Springs, Colo.; Brent Knox, Plainview; Jerilyn Partin, El Paso; Alicia Vega, New Deal

Association of Applied Science: Melanie Headley, Plainview