BUIES CREEK -- During the Campbell University School of Education’s 20th annual Service of Convocation and Commissioning on Friday, Feb. 8, at Turner Auditorium, nearly 100 seniors on track to graduate this year recited, in unison, a pledge “to honor and serve others” and “to accept others with sensitivity and courage.”
The pledge reflected the School of Education’s mission and the ceremony’s theme: “Opening doors of service to others.” The ceremony -- as well as the pins that each of the 95 seniors majoring in education, psychology and social work received -- also marked the students’ transition from being just a student to being helping professionals as they begin their student teaching or their field work and internship experiences.
“It is a huge achievement [for these students] to develop in their programs to the point where they go and begin . . . to be servants,” Campbell president Jerry M. Wallace told the several hundred students, family, friends, faculty and staff who attended the ceremony. “These proud Campbell students are going out to do many things that will be so helpful to so many.”
Those students include education major Kellany Dawn Jones, psychology major Samuel Andrew Faulkner and social work major Chanté Renee Clark. The three seniors each received their respective department’s Outstanding Student Awards in recognition of their academic achievement, leadership, service and love of learning.
Also honored for their professional achievement and service -- and for being models of servants to the Class of 2013, as School of Education Dean Karen Nery noted -- were four alumni: Stephanie Grady, a science teacher at Lakewood High School in Salemburg, N.C., received the Last Decade Alumna Award; Couple Carolyn Cates, executive director of event management at Victory University, and Michael Cates, executive vice-president of the Memphis Medical Social, were named Outstanding Alumni; and Lt. Col. D. Franklin Swayne received the Lifetime Achievement Alumnus Award.
Swayne, a military social worker and member of the U.S. Air Force, also delivered the keynote address. In it, he encouraged students to authentically serve others in both their professional and personal lives.
“Each person you are going to be serving is a humble opportunity to stand on holy ground,” said Swayne, who drew on the Book of 1 Peter and his various military experiences, including leading a mental health team that served at the Pentagon immediately after 9/11. “And when you have the right spirit, it comes with the faith in providence that you will be able to meet their need . . . and provide them with authentic service.”
Providing that authentic service, Swayne said, requires three critical elements: the right person, the right skills and the right time. “Any profession, any career path, I think you’ll find that service is not easy,” Swayne said. “It’s risky; it has rejection, failure. But when those three [elements] come together, you get the most amazing reward.”
Below is information about each senior who was named an Outstanding Student and bios on the alumni the School of Education recognized Friday during its Service of Convocation and Commissioning:
Chanté Renee Clark of Whiteville, N.C., Outstanding Student Award in Social Work
Background: A 2009 graduate of East Columbus High School
Major: Social work
Campus activities: President of the Social Work Club, which organized the first Hunger Banquet at Campbell last fall; member of the Board of Directors and a student representative/student liaison with the National Association of Social Workers-North Carolina Chapters; member of the Presidential Scholars Club; member of the Campus Activities Board for Weekends off and the Formal Committee
Academics: Made Dean’s and President’s List; inducted into numerous honor societies, including including Pi Gamma Mu, Phi Alpha, Psi Chi, Sigma Tau Delta and Phi Lambda Theta
What’s next: Continue her field work experience serving with the Cumberland County Guardian Ad Litem program and go on to pursue a master’s degree and eventually a juris doctorate with a concentration in family law
From the program: “In reviewing her time at Campbell, Chanté believes that in following God’s plan she has been greatly blessed. In moving forward, Chanté will miss Campbell along with the faculty-staff who have freely shared their knowledge and support over her four years in ‘the Creek.’”
Samuel Andrew Faulkner of Henderson, N.C., Outstanding Student Award in Psychology
Background: A 2009 graduate of Southern Vance High School
Campus activities: President of the Psychology Club; student representative to the Friends of the School of Education; student member of the Campbell University Sexual Assault Awareness; student ambassador with the School of Education; student member with the N.C. Psychological Association’s Scientific Academic Student Affairs Committee
Academics: Named to the Dean’s list; Inducted into Psi Chi honor society; presented research findings at the Southeastern Psychological Association’s Conference; presented research findings at the N.C. Psychological Association’s Spring Conference and the Carolina Psychology Conference
What’s next: Exploring graduate studies in school psychology
From the program: “Sam enrolled at Campbell to be an English and pre-law major and to be a member of the Fighting Camels football team. After much soul searching, [Sam] made some dramatic changes in his life; he felt pulled to join one of the helping professions making a difference in the world. Sam changed his major to psychology and decided it was time to hang up his cleats for the final time.”
Kellany Dawn Jones of Angier, N.C., Outstanding Student Award in Professional Education
Background: 2009 graduate of Harnett Central High School
Major: Education with focus on middle grades
Activities: Member of the Teaching Fellows program; co-chair of the Collegiate Middle Level Association; participated in the 2012 N.C. Council of Teachers of Mathematics conference; tutor for the Johnston County AVID program; Volunteer in her church’s children’s programs; active with Campbell’s Baptist Student Union
Academics: Named to the President’s List for academic honors in every semester she has been eligible; maintained an “all A” grade point average in her coursework
What’s next: Begin student teaching a sixth-grade science and math class on Feb. 13
From the program: “Looking back over her time as a Campbell student, Kellany knows this has been a time for great personal, spiritual and professional growth for her. While admittedly being a bit nervous thinking about [her] first days in a classroom [as a teacher], she knows the faculty members in the School of Education have prepared her for success.”
Stephanie Grady ’05 of Roseboro, N.C., Graduate of the Last Decade Alumna Award
Stephanie Grady '05 worked for 20 years as a radiology technologist before enrolling at Campbell University in 2002 to pursue a Bachelor of Science in biology. After graduating in 2005, she began her teaching career at Lakewood High School in Salemburg, N.C. Over the past eight years there, she has taught biology, physical science, environmental science, forensics and scientific visualization. She’s also chair of the science department and has won six Bright Ideas grants from Progress Energy to assist in funding specific projects. She’s currently pursuing a graduate degree in science and math education at N.C. State University.
Carolyn ’74 and Michael ’72 Cates of Memphis, Tenn., Outstanding Alumni Awards
After graduating from Campbell with a degree in psychology, Carolyn Cates ’74 joined Lee-Harnett Mental Health, where she worked with families to place adults who were mild to moderately delayed in group homes. She later joined the Developmental Evaluation Center as a social worker and was part of an interdisciplinary team of professionals who evaluated young children for potential developmental delays. In 1995, she joined the staff at what is now Victory University, where she’s currently the executive director of event management. Her previous positions at Victory have included vice president of enrollment management, dean of evening students and director of student retention. She received her Master of Social Work from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
After receiving his degree in psychology, Michael Cates ’72 joined the N.C. Medical Society as a field representative. He went on to earn his designation as a Certified Association Executive and became the executive vice-president of the Memphis Medical Society in Tennessee in 1985. Among his many civic activities, he has been a member of the Healthy Shelby’s steering committee, the Tennessee Medical Association, the Physical Leadership College, the American Association of Medical Society’s executive board, the Regional Health Council, and the Mid-South Medical Group Managers Association. Hehas also served as both a workgroup leader and as the co-chair of the Physician Advisory Committee of the Aligning Forces for Quality, and is a past president of the Tennessee Society of Association Executives. In 2011, he served as vice chair of the Dorothy Snider Foundation and as a member of the Memphis School of Public Health’s advisory committee.
Lt. Col. D. Franklin Swayne ’90 of Dayton, Ohio, Lifetime Achievement Alumnus Award
Lt. Col. D. Franklin Swayne ’90, originally of Garner, N.C., serves as a social work resident director with the U.S. Air Force, supervising and training four junior social workers. He worked for several years as a social worker in the civilian sector before joining the U.S. Air Force in 1995. He was initially assigned to the Biomedical Service Corps as a behavioral scientist and went on to serve as the chief of Behavioral Health Sciences, where he has consulted 10 installations and 350 personnel. He has carried out similar duties at other posts at Spangdahlem Air Base in Germany, the Lakenheath AirForce Base in the United Kingdom, the Keesler Air Force Base in Mississippi, and the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio. He also has been deployedto the Pentagon in Washington, D.C.; Diego Garcia, which is part of the British Indian Ocean Terriority; the Ali Al Salem Air Base in Kuwait; and the Bagram Theater Internment Facility at the Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan.
Throughout his career, Swayne has addressed all aspects impacting a person’s behavior, such as mental health, family advocacy, alcohol and drug abuse prevention and treatment, drug demand reduction and suicide prevention. In recognition of his service, Swayne has won numerous medals and ribbons, including the Air Force Commendation Medal, the Army Commendation Medal and the Air Force Achievement Medal.
He received his Bachelor of Science in social work from Campbell and his Master of Social Work from East Carolina University in 1995. He has furthered his educational studies by participating in the Squadron Officer School and the Air Command Staff College and by receiving specialized training in the areas of FBI Hostage Crisis Negotiator, PTSD/Traumatic Brain Injury and Joint Special Operations.
Article by Cherry Crayton, digital content coordinator