More than 3,300 UWM students began their adventures in the great big world after graduating Sunday, May 20, at the UW-Milwaukee Panther Arena. Every one of them has a story of hard work and perseverance, setbacks and success. Here are six.
Kenneth Germanson is a longtime labor leader, journalist and community activist who was one of a group of students who advocated for the formation of a four-year public university in Milwaukee in the late 1940s.
It’s never too late to graduate. That’s the experience of Christine Lyons, who started at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in the 1970s and is finally graduating in May 2018.
At an age when many people are thinking about retirement, Gonzalo Couto-Lain is thinking about a new career. He receives his UWM degree in May, then plans to work while pursuing a master’s degree. “If you start a career at 60, you have 15, 20 years left,” he says. “That’s not bad.”
Miela Fetaw has already begun building a strong career in journalism even before graduation. Her experience as an immigrant helps make her determined to tell the stories of refugees and other immigrants.
After Linh Pham scored 11 quick interviews but didn’t get a job offer, “I felt like it was the end of the world,” she said. But she persisted.
For James Flores, a college education isn’t something that benefits only himself: “I have moral obligation to spread what I’ve learned at UWM and positively affect my community.”
Stacy Gnacinski was planning to become a physician assistant until she took a sport psychology course that was a prerequisite for the kinesiology master’s program. She loved it so much, she pursued it as a career.
UWM architecture graduate Jarincy Flores Rodriguez wants to leave her mark, “…so that when I design some really great building, I hope that my grandchildren would come and say, ‘My grandmother designed that.’”
Chancellor Mark Mone and some of UWM’s spring 2017 graduates had a little fun singing some songs before graduation.