No Tassel Left Unturned at Commencement

No Tassel Left Unturned at Commencement

Hundreds of students were welcomed into the health care profession at the annual ceremony.

Written by Suzanna Cisneros

Students from all schools and campuses were honored during the ceremony.

Students from all schools and campuses were honored during the ceremony.

After years of hard work, more than 800 May graduates recently received degrees in various health disciplines at the TTUHSC commencement ceremony. An estimated 500 additional students participated in the ceremony as December and August graduates.

President Tedd L. Mitchell, M.D., who presided over the ceremony, said commencement is an exciting time for faculty, students and family members.

“I have the honor of not only presiding over this ceremony, but also witnessing the celebration of all their hard work,” Mitchell said. “These graduates have received an exceptional education and have endless possibilities of contributing to patient care and research across this country.”

Brig. Gen. Richard J. Tubb, M.D., served as the guest speaker. As the physician to the U.S. president, Tubb was responsible for providing the president direct support and advice. He oversaw all health care services within the White House, Camp David, the Western White House, aboard executive aircraft, while deployed and at contingency locations. President Clinton appointed him as director of the White House Medical Unit and physician to the White House effective Jan. 20, 2000. President George W. Bush reaffirmed Tubb’s leadership and subsequently commissioned him as physician to the president in March 2002.

Prior to the commencement ceremony, hooding and student awards were presented at individual school convocations. Awards presented were:

  • The Dean’s Recognition Award for the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences – Joel Francis Aldrich, Ph.D.
  • Outstanding Graduate Student – Prabodh Kumar Kandala, Ph.D.
  • The School of Medicine Gold Headed Cane Award – Wesley Lane, M.D.
  • Dean’s Highest Academic Achievement Awards in the School of Medicine – Matthew Richards, M.D., Russell Payne, M.D. and Alicia Gill, M.D.
  • School of Nursing Dean’s Award for Excellence-Doctorate – James LaVelle Dickens, R.N., NP
  • School of Nursing Dean’s Award for Excellence-Graduate – Erika Benfield, R.N., BSN
  • Dean’s Award for Excellence in Nursing-Undergraduate – Diana L. Jones, BSN
  • The School of Allied Health Sciences Dean’s Award for Excellence-Graduate – Kirk Aaron, Canada, DPT
  • Dean’s Award for Excellence-Undergraduate – Dalan Cole Gore, SLHS
  • The School of Pharmacy Bowl of Hygieia Award – Jacqueline Elizabeth Petty, Pharm.D.
  • Highest GPA in the School of Pharmacy – Brian Thomas Terrell, Pharm.D.
  • Gallery

    Click here for more commencement photos.


Story produced by the Office of Communications and Marketing, (806) 743-2143.

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Beginning in 1969 as Texas Tech University School of Medicine, TTUHSC now is a six-school university with campuses in Abilene, Amarillo, Dallas/Fort Worth, El Paso, Lubbock, Midland and Odessa.

TTUHSC has trained more than 20,000 health care professionals, and meets the health care needs of more than 2.5 million people in the 108 counties including those in the Texas Panhandle and eastern New Mexico.

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