When the pandemic sent students online, Marissa Ouverson decided to try her hand at competitive steak grilling, traveling around the country and ultimately becoming a world champion.
Valeria Miranda Ortiz spoke no English when she arrived at Iowa State. No matter: She spent hours learning the language — and two others — to achieve her dream of becoming a veterinarian.
What was supposed to be a one-off summer job as a farmhand in high school turned into a lifelong passion for agriculture that led Adam Bittner to Iowa State, to a Spanish degree and to travels around the globe.
In 2016, Chika Okoli moved to the United States from Nigeria, hoping to start a new career and a new life with his wife and three sons. This new chapter in life started off with a major obstacle. His wife’s VISA was delayed, so Okoli traveled to the U.S. with his two oldest sons while his wife, who was then pregnant with his youngest son, remained in Nigeria.
Ocean explorer and professor of oceanography Robert Ballard will deliver the keynote address for the University of Rhode Island’s 136th Undergraduate Commencement. WaterFire founder and executive artistic director Barnaby M. Evans will receive an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree.