Students set to lead Cameron’s 2017 Convocation

Three Cameron University students have been selected to speak on behalf of the university’s student body during Convocation 2017, a celebration of academic excellence. Lauren Adkinson, Lorenzo Butler and Ana Paez will share personal stories of accomplishment and inspiration during the annual event. Convocation, a Cameron tradition highlighted by musical performances and colorful pageantry, will take place at 10 a.m., Friday, October 6, in Aggie Gym and is open to the public.

“Cameron takes great pride in sharing the accomplishments of our students,” says Ronna Vanderslice, Vice President for Academic Affairs. “We will hear from three students, each of whom will share glimpses of their personal journey toward degree completion.”

CU’s student body is the focal point of Convocation. Honor students are selected to carry banners for each academic department. Faculty and staff members attired in academic regalia complete the processional. During the ceremony, honor and scholarship students receive special recognition for their academic achievements.

About the speakers

Lauren Adkinson earned a bachelor’s degree in Organizational Leadership last spring and is now seeking a Master of Science in Behavioral Sciences with a concentration in Marriage and Family. Adkinson admits that her struggle with traditional learning during her undergraduate education was helped by Cameron’s online educational opportunities. Uncertain about a career during her early years at CU, she says she “half-heartedly pulled herself through courses trying to become an adult with purpose.”  When she gave birth to her son prematurely, Lauren found that purpose as she watched those helping her son. If the medical staff that helped him had given up their studies because they felt mediocre, he may not have had a chance. She realized that success matters on a greater level, so she became serious about finishing her degree and now wants to help others.

Lorenzo Butler has led a notable life during his time as a student at Cameron. A senior pursuing a Bachelor of Music with a concentration in Vocal Performance, he is a member of the CU Centennial Singers and the Cameron Concert Choir. Butler performed the lead role of Lt. Cable in Cameron's production of "South Pacific" as well as undertaking roles in "110 in the Shade," "The Precious Ladies” and the recent production of "Alice in America-Land."  The tenor has performed with the Lawton Philharmonic Orchestra in addition to representing Cameron in the Oklahoma Choral Directors Association’s All-Collegiate Honor Choir and the American Choral Directors Association’s All-College Choir. The multi-talented musician is also a member of the CU Percussion Ensemble and is a composer. After graduation, the Phi Kappa Phi inductee plans to continue his music studies in graduate school.

Service to others is important to senior English Education major Ana Paez. During her life in high school, Paez not only recognized the importance of English, but was heavily influenced by teachers who encouraged her to set and reach high goals. They inspired her to become an educator. Coursework at Cameron has allowed her to discover how to enable students to have the same positive experience with English that she did. Her desire to help others extends beyond the walls of the classroom. As a member of the CU chapter of Sigma Tau Delta, she has conducted fundraisers, participated in Cameron’s Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service community projects, participated in book drives and raised funds for disaster relief.

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September 28, 2017