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Poole College honors nearly 450 graduates at December Commencement Ceremony

Photo of new Alumni during December 2016 Poole College Pinning ceremony
Poole College concludes each commencement program with a 'pinning' ceremony for the college's newest alumni.

On Friday, December 16, the Poole College of Management celebrated the graduation of nearly 450 students at its winter commencement ceremony. The graduates included 11 who received doctoral degrees in economics, 94 who received master’s degrees and 221 who received bachelor’s degrees, in accounting, business administration or economics. Annette L. Ranft, dean and Stephen P. Zelnak Jr. Chair at Poole College, welcomed the students and guests and introduced individual speakers.

Undergraduate Commencement Speaker

Marion Lorin Mercedes presented the college’s traditional undergraduate student reflection. Originally from the Dominican Republic, Mercedes has lived in Raleigh for the past six years. She transferred to Poole College from Wake Tech Community College, and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in accounting and a concentration in internal auditing.

While at NC State, Mercedes served as president of the Internal Audit student organization, co-president of professional development for the Association of Latino Professionals for America, and as a Student Network Group Student Mentor in Poole College’s Office of Undergraduate Programs. She has a post-graduation internship with Grant Thornton in their audit department. Read her remarks.

At the conclusion of the commencement ceremony, Ranft ‘pinned’ Mercedes with an NC State Poole College lapel pin, a tradition that was established when the college was named in 2010. Each graduate received a Poole College pin as they crossed the stage, and are encouraged to give to other alumni they meet in the course of their careers. As they give away their pin, they may request a new from the college’s Office of Development and External Relations.

Student Honorees

Tamah Morant, associate dean for undergraduate programs, introduced another honoree, the Poole College of Management Board of Advisors Outstanding Student award recipient. Receiving the award was Lily Hiu Mei Chan, who graduated with a bachelor’s degree in business administration and is joining IBM as a procurement professional.

“Lily has truly embraced our culture of Think and Do,” Morant said. “During her time at NC State, she has been involved in numerous community service organizations, earned the President’s volunteer service award, and completed internships at IBM, Bayer Crop Science and Sage Works. She has participated in study abroad programs in Germany and France. She also plans to continue her involvement with Poole College as a Student Network Group professional mentor.”

Faculty nominated 15 students for the award this year and 10 were selected as finalists. Nominations are based on the students’ demonstrated leadership and engagement and participation in personal and professional growth experiences at NC State.


Poole College Board of Advisors Outstanding Undergraduate Student Finalists

  • Carlos Gonzalo Alva
  • Hannah E. Buckley
  • Amanda L. Cain
  • Lily Hiu Mei Chan
  • Jacob Ivan Dekker
  • Ester Horrer
  • Marian Lorin Mercedes
  • Mitchell D. Moore
  • Monique Stelladine Smit
  • Robert von Jess
  • University Valedictorians
  • Christopher J. Aronis
  • James Franklin Cuttioni, Jr.
  • Sarah Ellen Moore
  • Shizuka Obata

University Scholars Program

  • Hanna E. Buckley
  • Josh L. Chandler
  • Stephanie Evans
  • Aquilla Mae Gardner
  • Mim Bowman McCarthy
  • Shizuka Obata
  • Dana Michelle Pippin
  • Jared Warrrick Stegall
  • Cara Beth Thierbach
  • Emily A. Waters

Alexander Hamilton Scholars

  • John Brandon Fahy
  • Aquilla Mae Gardner
  • Mitchell D. Moore
  • Soumya Suresha Nabadar
  • Matthia Nichole Rader
  • Cara Beth Thierbach

Data Analytics Honors Program

  • Akram Emadadin Al-Kholaid
  • Carlos Gonzalo Alva
  • Hannah E. Buckley
  • Thi Minh Duong
  • Xiaofeng Han

SKEMA/NC State Dual Degree Scholars

  • Alexandre Marcel Carton
  • Maxime Grindler
  • Benjamin Serra

Jenkins Graduate School | McLauchlan Fellows

  • Roger Vincent Burns
  • Anna Smith Lambert
  • Jennifer Reich McCraw
  • Nick Ramirez

Beta Alpha Psi

  • Alec Joseph Altman
  • Christopher McCord Bonavita
  • Krizia Dela Cruz Fajarito
  • Iryna Mykalaiivna Kharlamova
  • Kornravee Sintavanon
  • Emily A. Waters
  • Jacob Imad Younis

Beta Gamma Sigma

  • Akram Emadadan Al-Kholaidi
  • Alec Joseph Altman
  • Christopher J. Aronis
  • Sydney Ann Bennett
  • Sarah Collins
  • Nicholas Patrick Crispi
  • Vijay Kailash
  • Min Jeong Moon
  • Matthew Zachary Nance
  • Anna Marie Owens
  • Emily A. Waters

Phi Kappa Phi

  • Emily A. Waters

A team of 23 student marshals, led by Head Marshals Kasey Janes and Olivia Fuller, helped assure that all were in place for the commencement ceremony.