Wayland Holds Spring Commencement Ceremony
PLAINVIEW – Mayra Ramirez stood at the podium Saturday afternoon. There was a full house in Hutcherson Center as family and friends gathered for Wayland Baptist University’s regular spring Commencement ceremony. Looking out across the crowd, she addressed the graduates, telling her personal story of struggle and success.
Ramirez, a graduating senior from El Paso, was selected by the student body to give the student address. Drawing from her own background, Ramirez challenged student to break the generational barriers that hold them back, whatever those barriers may be. Ramirez is a wife and mother of a 14-month old son. She is a full-time student and an athlete on the Wayland wrestling team. She is the youngest of five siblings and the only one to attend college.
“Where I grew up, college is just a dream that not many can accomplish or even consider,” she said. “God, with his remarkable timing, proved to me that he was going to lead me through.”
When she found out she was pregnant, Ramirez contemplated dropping out of school. Her husband, Christopher, who also is a full-time student and member of the United States Marine Corps, also considered putting his education on hold so that she could finish hers.
“But giving up was not an option and we both decided to stay at Wayland and pursue our degrees,” she said.
With the help of her wrestling coach and faculty members, who would take turns soothing the child when she was forced to bring him to class or practice, Ramirez was able to stay involved in school and maintain her schedule. Not only did she complete her classes, but she returned to the wrestling mat and she continued to be involved in Enactus, an international student business organization that focuses on helping others.
“Wayland has been a life-changing experience for me and it will continue to be for my family. I am very proud and grateful to God that I am a Pioneer for His glory,” Ramirez said. “I often think that I am not deserving of all these things and do not belong here. But my wrestling team, son and husband are a daily reminder that God brought me here for a reason, and that reason is to break the generational curses placed upon us.”
On Saturday, Ramirez graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in accounting. She plans to continue her education and earn a master’s degree in business before beginning a career at a certified public accountant.
Ramirez was one of 129 in the 2017 graduating class.
Master of Arts in Counseling: Kelsea Denman, Happy; Christian Enevoldsen, Amarillo; Jennifer Gonzalez, Silverton; Andrea Morales, Plainview; Cyle Petty, Lubbock; Cathy Quigley-Faulks, Lubbock; heather Saldana, Plainview.
Master of Arts in Criminal Justice: Jose Alvarez, Hereford; Stephanie Godino, Plainview.
Master of Arts in Management: Tawnya Garcia, San Antonio.
Master of Business Administration: Amanda Ramirez, Plainview.
Master of Christian Ministry: Kelli Watson, Plainview.
Master of Education: Kelsey Barbour, Amarillo; Ashley Carthel, Plainview; Kathlyn Davis, Hale Center; Iesha Greer, Reno, Nev.; Shawna Monreal, Canyon; Shayla Monreal, Canyon; Jessica Thornton, Muleshoe; Joshua Weir, Bunbury, Australia.
Master of Public Administration: Geneva Marquez, Plainview; Michael-Shane Varner, Plainview.
Bachelor of Applied Science: Christopher Abalos, Abernathy; Gabriel Ayala, Carolina, Puerto Rico; Dora Chavez, Dimmitt; Rebecca Crank, Plainview; Caleb Davidson, Chine Spring; Tiffany Davis, Placedo; Kelton Fore, Plainview; Melanie Headley, Plainview; Connie Jones, Kermit; Justin Kim, Lovington, N.M.; Rosanna Madrigal, Plainview; Alden Mann, Wimberley; Michael Nelson, Jr., China Grove, N.C.; Garret Pool, Lorenzo; Jason Urbano, Jersey City, N.J.
Bachelor of Arts: Zachary Adams, Austin; Cesar Alvarez-Ramirez, Hereford; Virginia Anderson, Midland; Rachel Bohnet, Salem, OR; Tyquanesha Brantley, Lubbock; Courtney Chancellor, Lubbock; Romen Correa, Victorville, Cal.; Terry Fields, Jr., Wichita Falls; Jared Haines, Olton; Keilie Heinrich, Slaton; Hamilton Hill, Llano; Magdalina Hollingsworth, Carlsbad, N.M.; Callie Hughes, Orange; Tamra Klusmeyer, Pampa; Nathan Langford, Pampa; Stormy Mack, Wills Point; Sean Powell, Troup; Sarafina Pride, Odessa; David Reed, Lubbock; Belinda Rubio, Arlington; Jose Samarron, Jr., Friona; Tyler Seward, Stratford; Taryn Shadden, Cotton Center; Audrey Sisemore, Kress; Cody Thomas, Cypress; Belinda Valdez, Plainview; Javonte Washington, Saint Paul, Minn.; Charyssa Woodcook, North Pole, Alaska.
Bachelor of Business Administration with Honors: Cody Lindberg, Southlake.
Bachelor of Business Administration: Steven Diack, Coquitlam, British Columbia, Canada; Natalie Garcia, Merida, Mexico; Bjorn Globke, Rostock, Germany; Jacob Hackett, Plainview; Wyatt Hardy, Farmington, N.M.; Jedediah Hedlund, Santa Maria, Cal.; Cindy Horn, Hamburg, Germany; Victor Magalhaes, Belo Horizonte, Brazil; David Martinez, Bogota, Colombia; Anthony Minjarex, Hobbs, N.M.; Mayra Ramirez, El Paso; Thiago Randazzo, Brasilia, Brazil; Maurice Redmond, Channelview; Elisabeth Rivera, Plainview; Jason Rowe, Bastrop; Shelby Sower Wolfforth; Derick Spargo, Idalou; Zachary Summers, Royse City; Christian Valles, Plainview; Garrett West, Highland Village; Travis White, Krum; Skyler Wood, Plainview; Abel Yemane, Houston.
Bachelor of Christian Ministry: Dwight Pennington, Petersburg; Jeffrey Vera, Plainview.
Bachelor of Music: Heather Seward, Bovina.
Bachelor of Science with Honors: Emily Brown, Aurora, Colo.
Bachelor of Science: Angel Aguilera, Houston; Jake Brozek, Bovina; Jacob Cerda, Plainview; Dakota Enriquez, Santa Anna; Lucian Hall, Lockney; Jerald Hilton, Lubbock; Jacob King, Plainview; Haley Lehman, New Home; Joseph Leos, San Antonio; Stephen Malouf, Canton; Josiah Morales, Marabella, Trinidad/Tobego; Mylie Oberg, Richland, Wash.; Brian O’Shaughnessy, Tucson, Ariz.; Ethan Percell, Phoenix, Ariz.; Kacy Pierce, Mesquite; Ezequiel Prado, Lugones, Asturias, Spain; Kodee Rhodes, Alamogordo, N.M.; Abraham Rodriguez, Mission; Bradley Shaw, Pecos; Jerrell Sheppard, Lubbock; KyLee Jo Shultz, Sudan; Lorenzo Soriano, North Richland Hills; Tamyra Stock, Katy; Brittaney Taylor, Lubbock; Mason Taylor, Aledo; Vianney Trujillo, El Paso; Joshua Vega, Lubbock; Braxton Vigus, West Columbia; Christopher Williams, Plainview.
Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies: Marisela Agundis, Muleshoe; Lindsay Brown, Memphis; Kristen Garcia, Plainview; Daniela Licerio, Plainview; Bridget Spencer, Lubbock; Kimberly Vanbebber, Seymour.
Associate of Applied Science: Julio Guzman, Jacksonville, N.C.