Future grads receive symbol of success
During the Ring Ceremony, seniors Stephany Kippers and Kathleen Kirkland (above) view their new rings. Terriance Henderson (below) shows off her ring during the reception after the Ring Ceremony. Christopher Martin
Just under 100 seniors received their Southeastern class rings at the Ring Ceremony, a university tradition that has taken place each semester since 2006. These rings represent a student's pride in the tradition, education and joy of being a part of the Southeastern family.
The Ring Ceremony was held on Thursday, Dec. 5 at 7 p.m. in the War Memorial Student Union Theatre.
For the ceremony, each senior came out one at a time to greet President John L. Crain and accept their ring. For some, the ceremony was a family tradition, whereas others were the first in their families to experience the moment.
English major Megan Ourso, who will graduate in spring 2014, participated in the Ring Ceremony to carry on the family tradition. Her father, Stephen Ourso, graduated from Southeastern in 1975.
"I've been really excited about it," said Ourso. "It's something I can take and keep with me from Southeastern, so who wouldn't be excited about that? My dad went to this university, and he always wears his ring still, so when the order time came around he was like, 'OK, it's your turn now.' That's when it really hit me that it's almost time to graduate."
Garrett Tregre, a senior majoring in engineering technology, will be the first in his family to graduate from college. Tregre will complete his undergraduate coursework next semester and participate in spring commencement.
"I've still got one more semester, but I'm pretty excited," said Tregre. "It feels great [getting a ring]. It's definitely some motivation with finals coming up. It's something to look forward to. It's a memory for me. I want something to remember. College has been some of the best years of my life."
Biology major Terriance Henderson will be the first member of her family to graduate from Southeastern as well. Henderson will be graduating this week at commencement on Dec. 14.
"It feels great," said Henderson. "I mean, my high school ring meant a lot to me, but this one means even more. It's another step. Moving on. Closing a chapter and opening a new one. It means everything."
To many students, the Southeastern ring signifies more than just completing a degree program. It represents the time they spent on campus, in classes, with organizations and at events with friends.
"I'm the first out of my mom's kids," said psychology senior Giara Major, who also graduates this semester. "My mom graduated from Southern University. I'm the first to graduate from Southeastern. It's like a small token knowing that I'm almost there. I've been here for four and a half years, and it means a lot, so it's something to remember all the years I've been here."
The official ring of Southeastern Louisiana University is issued exclusively by the Alumni Association. Students who are interested in ordering official Southeastern rings for future ring ceremonies should go through the University Bookstore or Balfour. For additional information, see the Alumni Association page on the Southeastern website.
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