GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Right at the stroke of noon, a fanfare of trumpet music heralded Chelsea Robinson, who became the 75,000 person to be awarded a degree from Grand Valley State University.
Robinson was among the 2,500 students who participated in Grand Valley’s commencement ceremonies May 1 at Van Andel Arena in downtown Grand Rapids. The commencement ceremonies paused as Robinson posed for pictures and was presented with a clock by Grand Valley President Thomas J. Haas. She and her family then gathered in one of Van Andel Arena's suites to to meet university mascot Louie the Laker and receive a gift basket from the Alumni Association filled with Laker gear, a $100 gift certificate to the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel and a personal three-page letter from Diane Paton, the very first student admitted to Grand Valley in 1963.
Robinson, 26, originally hails from Fairview and currently lives in Walker. She earned a bachelor of science degree from the College of Health Professions, studying diagnostic medical sonography with a focus on echocardiography and vascular sonography. She recently had a job interview and hopes to land a job in her field soon.
"It's been a really long road for me to get to this point, and this feels like the culmination of everything that I worked hard for for the last four years. It made all that hard work seem worthwhile," Robinson said.
Chris Barbee, director of Alumni Relations, said "This is an exciting milestone for Grand Valley. We're proud of Chelsea, and all of our graduates who have worked so hard and achieved so much."
Students participating in the morning ceremony represented five colleges: Seidman College of Business, College of Community and Public Service, Padnos College of Engineering, College of Health Professions, and Kirkhof College of Nursing.