BELTON, TX – The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor held commencement services for the Fall 2023 semester today at Crusader Stadium. This was the university's 167th graduating class, and an estimated 460 students were awarded degrees, including 328 baccalaureate degrees, 92 master's degrees, and 40 doctoral degrees. One commissioning officer also participated in the ceremony.
UMHB President Dr. Randy O'Rear commended students for their dedication and determination to finish their degrees and celebrated the accomplishments of the class of 2023.
"Ceremonies like this are unique milestones in our lives. Class of 2023, sixty-four of you are the first in your family to graduate from college, and eight of you are graduating with a perfect 4.0. The youngest member of your class is 19 years old. And the oldest member of your class is 71 years young," he said. "In this ceremony, we have our most geographically diverse class of Physical Therapists and our first graduate with a Master of Public Health degree." He finished with, "Class of 2023, we are honored that you chose Mary Hardin-Baylor. As you embark on your careers, graduate school, or whatever is next, please know your Mary Hardin-Baylor family loves and is very proud of you."
Student recognitions during the ceremony included the Provost Medal for highest overall GPA, which was awarded to eight students who each graduated with perfect 4.0 grade point averages: Olivia Grace Byle of Round Rock, TX, Melody Grace Carl of Garland, TX, Katherine Elizabeth Snyder of Temple, TX, Jacob Warren Svare of Killeen, TX, Rylie Nicole Torres of Mathis, TX, Jon-Avery Solon Welch of Waller, TX, Kelsey Maree White of Keller, TX, and Mackenzie Lois Worthy of North Richland Hills, TX.
The university also recognized one student, Melody Grace Carl of Garland, TX, who successfully completed all the Honors Program requirements, including a senior research project. The one commissioning officer was Alexia Brown of Troy, TX.
The President's Award, presented to the graduating senior who has provided meritorious service to the university, particularly the senior class, was awarded to Catherine Burke of Sunnyvale, TX. She was involved in Welcome Week, Missions Emphasis Week, Psalms, Easter Pageant, and Global Outreach. The Loyalty Cup, awarded to the student most representative of the university's ideals, traditions, and spirit, was given to two students. Caden Steubing of Groveton, TX, was actively involved in campus life, Stunt Night, Miss MHB, Cru Knights, was a color leader, interned with strength and conditioning, and played Crusader Football. Ange Rugira of Fort Worth, TX, was actively involved in Welcome Week, Easter Pageant, Revival, the Big Event, and served with Young Life at Temple High School.