MSU-Meridian to recognize outstanding graduates at December commencement

Contact:  Lisa SollieMSU-Meridian’s five outstanding graduates for fall 2019 include (l to r):   Elam Davis of Quitman, Tanisha Marshall of Lacombe, Louisiana, Rebecca Hodge White of Meridian, Brandon Clark of Philadelphia and Lyle Wallace of Collinsville. (not pictured)

MERIDIAN, Miss.—Five Mississippi State University-Meridian students will be recognized as outstanding graduates during fall commencement ceremonies slated for Thursday [Dec. 12] at the MSU Riley Center. They are among 100 students eligible to receive their diplomas at the 11 a.m. ceremony.

The honorees include:
—Rebecca Hodge White of Meridian, Outstanding Undergraduate Student for the Division of Arts and Sciences. She will receive the Dennis J. Mitchell Award for Excellence. A psychology major, White is a member of Phi Theta Kappa and Alpha Chi Honor Society, whose members are ranked in the top 10% of students, as well as Psi Chi, an international honor society for psychology majors. White completed her degree requirements in August with high honors (magna cum laude) and plans to pursue a graduate degree in clinical psychology.

—Brandon Clark of Philadelphia, Outstanding Undergraduate Student for the Division of Business. An honors (cum laude) graduate and member of Phi Theta Kappa, Clark is the third member of his family to graduate from the Meridian Campus. He is an accounting major who hopes to specialize in white-collar crime with the Federal Bureau of Investigation or the U.S. Marshals Service. Clark will continue his education in 2020 at Mississippi State’s Starkville Campus, pursuing a master’s degree in accountancy.

—Tanisha Marshall of Lacombe, Louisiana, Outstanding Graduate Student for the Division of Business. One of 13 students in the first graduating class for MSU-Meridian’s Professional MBA program, she began her career as a mechanical engineer and then transitioned 13 years ago to business and operations. Marshall is senior project manager with the Mosaic Company in Saint James, Louisiana.

—Elam Davis of Quitman, Outstanding Undergraduate Student for the Division of Education. A kinesiology major, Davis is a member of Phi Theta Kappa and will graduate with high honors (magna cum laude). He plans to become an occupational therapist working with either children or senior citizens.  

—Lyle Wallace of Collinsville, Outstanding Graduate Student for the Division of Education. He completed the educational specialist degree requirements in school administration in August. Wallace began his career in accounting and finance but realized he had an affinity for teaching. In 2004 he entered the classroom after earning a teaching license through the alternate route teacher’s program. He continued his studies earning a Master of Arts in Teaching Community College Education degree at MSU-Meridian. This academic year, Wallace was named assistant principal at Philadelphia High School.

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