MSU-Meridian recognizes 2024 Outstanding Graduates

From left to right: Carol Porter, Rhonda Creel and Kyle Ingram are among five outstanding students selected by Mississippi State Faculty for their academic achievements.Contact: Marianne Todd

MERIDIAN, Miss.—In recognition of excellent academic achievements, Mississippi State University-Meridian is honoring five students as Outstanding Graduates for the 2024 spring semester.

Carol Porter, Master of Arts in Teaching K-5

Carol Porter of Meridian is enrolled in the Mississippi Teacher Residency, or MTR, program. The daughter of parents who worked in and retired from the Meridian Public School District, she will continue the MTR program in residence as a licensed teacher at Meridian’s Carver Elementary School. She also plans to pursue a specialist degree in education and a doctorate in counseling and psychology while working full time as a certified teacher. Porter is a member of the Phi Kappa Phi national honor society and Golden Key international honor society. She graduates summa cum laude.

Kyle Ingram, Business Administration

From Lauderdale, Kyle Ingram graduates with a bachelor's degree in business administration. He is a Riley Scholar and Beta Gamma Sigma member. After graduating summa cum laude, Ingram plans to remain in Lauderdale County while continuing his service in the Christian ministry.

Rhonda Creel, Social Work

Rhonda Creel graduates magna cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in social work. She is married and a mother of three children and grandmother of four. She is a 2024 winner of the Mitchell Award for Undergraduate Academic Excellence. She is a Riley Scholar and member of the Phi Alpha Honor Society. After graduation, she plans to pursue a career in an East Mississippi community organization.

Jordan Black, Master of Physician Assistant Studies

Jordan Black graduates summa cum laude with a Master of Physician Assistant Studies degree. From Madison, Wisconsin, Black earned a bachelor’s degree in biology and performed research as a McNair Scholar studying bacteriophage interactions in the University of Wisconsin Biodigester. He worked as a patient care technician in the cardiovascular intensive care unit for three years at the University of South Carolina before enrolling at MSU-Meridian.

Oliva Springfield, Elementary Education

Graduating summa cum laude, Springfield completes her degree in elementary education with a concentration in middle school education. A Wesson resident, Springfield will remain there after graduation to teach seventh-grade English and reading at Wesson Attendance Center. She is enrolled in the Mississippi Excellence in Teaching Program and is a recipient of MSU’s Spirit of State award.

The five students are among today’s [May 9] graduates at the MSU Riley Center.

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