USC Aiken Vets Honor Society Inducts New Members

Staff Report From Aiken CEO

Tuesday, April 30th, 2019

The University of South Carolina Aiken's Veterans Honor Society inducted more than 60 new members into the organization, which celebrates the academic achievements of veteran and military students.

The Class of 2019 includes the most graduates from this student segment in the recent history of the award-winning Office of Veteran and Military Student Success. The VMSS team helps veterans, retirees, currently serving members of the armed forces, and their family members navigate the university system - from application to graduation. During commencement, 19 percent of the graduates will represent these student populations. Of those, 63 percent earned the GPA necessary to be inducted into the Veterans Honor Society.

"You are an exceptional group of people, and if you do the work you will succeed at anything you can take on," said Stephanie Williammee, VMSS program coordinator.

"I know you are going to own this next chapter in life. I mean you closed this one out like a boss."

The military spouse who has of history of military service in her family was the keynote speaker during the induction ceremony.

She shared three key lessons learned with the soon-to-be Pacer alumni.

First, she told them to reach out when they need to.

"Utilize your support system. Don't be afraid to ask for help," the Army wife said.

"In just a short time, you will be USC Aiken alumni. This means you will forever be connected to this university and will have a community with the people surrounding you."

She also reminded the inductees that they can be and do whatever they want to in the next phase of their lives.

"If you ever find yourself at a point where you are in a rabbit hole of bad decisions or are not too fond of who you have become," Williamee said.

"Remember, you can choose to change it. You can be whomever you want to be."

Finally, she also urged the group to live in the present.

"While it is important for us to focus on the future, it is also important not to get so caught up that we forget to live in the now. Enjoy the moments of today!

"We are not guaranteed tomorrow. Make sure your priorities are on point and that you are living your life the way you want to live it. Do not take the now for granted. Make time for what is important," Williammee said as she shared insights from her own personal journey.

Along with faculty, staff, fellow students and the chancellor of USC Aiken, Williammee congratulated the Veterans Honor Society inductees, including:

Christian Adams

Christine Awkward

Jacob Barr

Rebecca Baxa

Regina Bolden

LaTesha Brandon

Aaron Brandt

Samantha Clark

Chandra Cole

Hannah Coleman

Carlos Corea

Jordan Cox

Jennifer Dirks

Destiny Dye

Hannah Dykes

Megan Elledge

William Ethridge

Rebecca Fabich

Jordan Fraser

Emily Ginas

Jeffrey Haffa

Travis Hardee

Shianne Huffman

Joshua Imholte

Madison Johnson

James Kelly

Aisha Kennedy

Victoria Lane

Briana Lewis

Joshua Lewis

Joseph Magrone

Kevin Main

Brandon McVey

Brendan Miller

Lacie Mishoe

Angel Oquendopadro

Samantha Peka

Briante Perkins

Elizabeth Platt

Jessica Radke

Gladys Ramos

Keirsten Ransom

Alex Richardson

David Richardson

Eric Roberts

Elizabeth Rustad

Rocio Sanchez

Ashley Shelton

Lauren Smiley

Darian Stevenson

Tristan Stone

Erica Stone

Kiamondi Thomas

Catherine Vance

Kaiti Walker

Lisa Washington

Fatima Watson

Ronald Willis

Destiny Willis

Sarah Zamiela