April 29, 2014
“I am so grateful to have been given the opportunity to thank UMass Amherst and most importantly, thank the students who made my experience so amazing,” says Mandeville. “I have done so much growing here and it's such an honor to be able to share a little bit of my experience with everyone.”
Mandeville beat out competition from across campus to be chosen as the student commencement speaker. After submitting her speech for consideration, she then had to audition in front of a committee to be selected as the student speaker. “I really am not sure what made me stand out from the rest,” says Mandeville, “but I hope the committee felt my sincerity and my love for UMass and the people here.”
Nearly 5,500 students will receive bachelor’s degrees at the ceremony in McGuirk Alumni Stadium to be held on Friday, May 9th. Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick will deliver this year’s commencement address.
“When I sat down to write the speech a few months ago, I really wanted to reflect on what made UMass unique and what made it special to me,” adds Mandeville, who plans to pursue a master’s degree in public health at UMass Amherst in the fall. “I know each senior must have a different experience at UMass, but there are definitely things that unite us all. I am so inspired by my classmates and their future endeavors and I hope my speech is a reflection of that!”
Update: Mandeville's speech was covered by the Springfield Republican. Watch it below.