A total of 611 physicians, dentists, nurses, allied health professionals, and graduate students in the health sciences were awarded degrees during the University of Mississippi Medical Center's 54th Commencement May 21 at the Mississippi Coliseum in Jackson.
University of Mississippi Chancellor Dan Jones and Dr. James Keeton, UMMC vice chancellor for health affairs and dean of the School of Medicine, presided over the ceremony in which the following degrees were conferred:
- in the School of Medicine, 111 graduates received the doctor of medicine (M.D.) degree;
- in the School of Dentistry, 36 graduates earned the doctor of dental medicine (D.M.D.) degree;
- in the School of Nursing, 158 graduates earned the bachelor of science in nursing (B.S.N.) degree and 39 earned the master of science in nursing (M.S.N.) degree;
- in the School of Health Related Professions, 204 graduates received degrees - the doctorate in physical therapy (D.P.T.) was awarded to 65 graduates and the master's in occupational therapy (M.O.T.) was awarded to 30 graduates, while the bachelor of science (B.S.) degree was awarded to 19 in dental hygiene, 31 in clinical laboratory science, 39 in health science, 5 in cytotechnology, and 15 in health information management.
- in the School of Graduate Studies in the Health Science, 21 graduates were presented the doctorate degree (Ph.D.) and 38 received the master of science (M.S.) degree.
- four students earned both the M.D. and Ph.D.
The six students who received top honors were:
- Christopher Welch Carr of Jackson, who received the Waller S. Leathers Award for the medical student with the highest academic average for four years;
- Stacey Ritter Carter of Gulfport, who received the Wallace V. Mann Award for the dental student with the highest academic average for four years;
- Jessica Alane Diamond of Brookhaven, who received the Christine L. Oglevee Memorial Award as the outstanding School of Nursing baccalaureate graduate;
- Kesha Andrews Prystupa of Harrisville, who received the Richard N. Graves Award for the registered nurse deemed most outstanding by the faculty in the areas of clinical and overall performance;
- Danielle Renae Whittington of Picayune, who received the Dr. Virginia Stansel Tolbert Award for the highest academic average in the School of Health Related Professions; and
- Eva-Stina Isabella Edholm of Jackson, who received the Charles Randall Award for outstanding research achievement.