New Orleans — A total of 504 graduates — more than 10% of whom earned summa cum laude honors — were awarded their degrees during Xavier University of Louisiana’s 92nd annual commencement May 11 at the University Convocation Center.
During the ceremony, the university also honored four of its own graduates — physicians Dr. Pierre Johnson ’02, Dr. Maxime Madhere ’02, and Dr. Joseph Semien ’01, and vocalist Gail Gilmore ’72 — with honorary degrees. The three physicians, who all participated in the keynote address, co-authored the book "Pulse of Perseverance" and are living testaments of Xavier’s mission. Gilmore is noted for strengthening the pathways to education and music for black youth.
Area graduates included
Darrow: Kiersten Rapp, Doctor of Pharmacy
Prairieville: Arbrielle Lowe, Bachelor of Arts
Gonzales: Alaysia Madison, Bachelor of Science
Donaldsonville: Esarrah Hopkins, Bachelor of Science, cum laude
Denham Springs: Jessie Pousson Doctor of Pharmacy, cum laude
Springfield: Ashley LaBeaud, Bachelor of Science
Independence: Marshay McCray, Bachelor of Arts
Hammond: Cassidy Williams, Doctor of Pharmacy, magna cum laude
Sherrell McVay, Master of Arts