Approximately 170 Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady University students were conferred masters, bachelors or associate degrees during the university’s commencement exercises at 2 p.m. May 18 in the Raising Cane’s River Center Exhibition Hall.

The commencement keynote speaker, Julio Melara, is the president and chief executive officer of Louisiana Business Inc., a multimedia publishing company which publishes the Baton Rouge Business Report and 225 Magazine. He is also the founder and CEO of the Business Report’s Executive Leadership Academy, an exclusive program for advancing professionals and business owners. Melara is a devoted husband and father, the author of five books and currently serves on several boards in Baton Rouge, including Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center, Iberia Bank and Baton Rouge Area Chamber.

Viktoriia Leigh, a Biology student originally from Ukraine, was recognized at commencement with the Student Excellence and Commitment to Service Award. This award distinguishes a graduating student who exemplifies the mission of the university and who has shown a strong commitment to scholarship, leadership and service.

Area graduates included:

Master of Medical Science in Physician Assistant Studies

  • Zachary: Jonathan Edward Fletcher, Laura Clesi Knight, Jennifer L. Warner.

Bachelor of Science in Nursing

  • Greenwell Springs: Christina Marie St. Pierre.
  • Zachary: Shelbi Nicole Dykes.


Associate of Science in Physical Therapist Assistant

  • Greenwell Springs: Emily Ann Moreno.

Associate of Science in Radiologic Technology

  • Zachary: Alicia E. Jaime, Kaitlyn Elizabeth Vince.

*Denotes 2019 Spring Honor Graduates