Alumna Nicole Valentine at Worcester State University's 2011 Senior Capping

Valentine: ‘Life is about chances; take them’

October 3, 2011
By: Worcester State University News

More than 150 Worcester State University seniors celebrated the beginning of their final academic year at one of the largest Senior Capping ceremony’s the University has ever seen on Sunday, Oct. 2 in the Sullivan Auditorium. The Senior Capping ceremony also allowed their family and friends and the WSU community to recognize them as they began the last leg of their undergraduate journey. Vice President of Student Affairs Dr. Sibyl Brownlee welcomed and congratulated the seniors on reaching this milestone.

Nicole Valentine, who graduated in1996 and was the keynote speaker, commended the senior class on making it to the final stretch of their college experience. “As you make your way around, I ask you to remember a few things,” she said. “You are young. Be patient. Everything will make sense in due time. Opportunity will always knock. Look for the signs and answer them. Life is about chances; take them. We are all human, and you will fail. Look for the opportunity to learn from others. When you are successful, and you will all be successful, help to show others the way. I know I am who I am today because of my mentors.”

Valentine, a member of the Alumni Association’s Advisory Board, works for the City of Worcester in the Division of Public Health as its public relations director and coordinator of chronic disease prevention. Before that, she worked for 15 years at the Red Cross of Central Massachusetts as director of emergency services-public affairs. She said that she started off small, but built her career as she went. She encouraged the senior class to never give up and to not turn down any experience, no matter how small the job looks. While working for the Red Cross, she gained knowledge in dealing with national disasters, fires, floods, and some events that hit very close to home. Working long hours, she never gave up, or stopped trying. Valentine encouraged everyone to follow their dreams and to never give up, even if life does not go as expected. “Be well, be happy and most importantly, be the successful person Worcester State University has prepared you to be,” she concluded.

Vice President of Institutional Advancement Thomas McNamara, Assistant Dean of Student Affairs and Director of Student Activities/Student Center Timothy Sullivan, Professor of Business Administration Laurie Dahlin, and other faculty and staff applauded the senior class on all of their accomplishments and achievements throughout their years at WSU. Sullivan also announced those seniors named to the 2011-2012 Who’s Who in American Colleges and Universities.

Senior Capping is one of the longest lasting traditions at Worcester State. Each year this event formally recognizes the members of the senior class, the beginning of their last academic year, and celebrates the scholarship recipients and new Who’s Who in American Colleges and Universities members. The ceremony also gave the Class of 2012 the opportunity to formally wear their caps and gowns for the first time.

WSU seniors named 2011-2012 Who’s Who in American Colleges and Universities: Veronica L. Adams, Nicholas M. Asterito, Kristin R. Baskowski, Kerri A. Bichekas, Erin M. Borglund, Thomas R. Brennan, Andrea J. Cashman, Elizabeth A. Chapman, Kaleigh E. Charette, Abigail J. Chmielecki, Christine M. Corcoran, Erica L. Cordio, Jessica Dempsey, Geovanna I. Diaz, Sarah A. Doiron, Timothy J. D’Orazio, Erica M. Dunton, Alyssa C. D’Urso, Jennifer A. Erickson, Ian Fields, James M. Forkey, Jennifer M. Gardner, Leora Gavel, Joseph Geagea, Alexander R. Hackathorn, Patrick D. Hare, Molly J. Hein, Trevor R. Hodde, Kerri M. Hommel, Alexandra R. Humiston, Jaime L. Jacobs, Tara A. Jacobsen, Shelley N. Kaliszewski, Kevin K. Karanja, Elizabeth J. Klein, Spencer Long, Daniel J. Milano, Alicia M. Moorhouse, Stephanie E. Mullen, Chukwunwike Osakwe, Alicia N. Penta, Stephanie E. Perkins, Brittany M. Pomales, Victoria L. Reiszner, Alexandra A. Salcedo, Dana A. Shaffer, Noelle M. Silsbee, Asia L. Simpson, Jessica M. Strazdas, Danielle M. Tacey, Ashley Taylor, Sabrina Tordoff, Chelsea L. Tougas, Carolyn J. Wilcomb, and Kimberly A. Zelas.

Written by communications major and intern Chelsea Tougas ’12.

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