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CU's Students Honored at Annual Convocation

LAWTON Okla_ It was quite a celebration Friday morning at Cameron University, as hundreds of students were recognized for their hard work.

The annual convocation ceremony is held to bring students, faculty, family and friends together to celebrate the achievements they have made academically and in their extracurricular activities. One student from each of the four colleges was chosen to speak at the event.

The event was geared at praising students who have gone above and beyond on campus, but the students recognized their school more than they wanted to be recognized themselves. Rebecca Espinosa, one of those students, credits Cameron with helping to direct her life down a positive road toward success.

"I'm standing in front of you all today as proof," Espinosa said, "Proof that anything you want to accomplish in life is possible, and you can make it happen."

Espinosa, who is part of the university's ROTC program, didn't think she had the chops for college. Now, she's one of their top students and shared advice she has learned to live by.

 "If you mess up, learn from your mistakes and move forward," Espinosa said.

Colten Kennedy is also in ROTC and talked about the skills he'll take with him when he is commissioned into the military in May.

"Beyond the basic military drill and ceremony and tactics, we're able to discover how team building works and working with people that are of higher rank than you and lower rank than you and how to lead and motivate people," Kennedy said. CU President Dr. John McArthur said the benefits these out-of-classroom experiences can have are priceless.  

"That's where so much of the informal advice that leads to careers, choices of majors, choices of activities," McArthur said. "That really happens outside the classroom. So, if the students take the time to get involved in clubs, activities and organizations, it really pays dividends for them in the long run," McArthur said.

Florencia Tornero came all the way to Lawton from Argentina with a dream: to play tennis at the collegiate level while furthering her education. Well, that's exactly what the multi-medaled student-athlete accomplished.

Senior Art Major Hailey Harris arrived here four years ago less confident, shy and reserved, but during her time at Cameron, she has been able to get involved and break out of her shell.

"I had a new perspective looking at the ocean in front of me, not with fear, but with promise," Harris said.

All of the students 7News spoke with say they are confident that their successes on campus will carry into the real world. All four of them graduate in May.


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