Scholars recognized during the 77th Biannual Honors Convocation

With graduation approaching in May, Alcorn State University senior Dekayla Thomas remains diligent in succeeding academically. Her dedication has earned her the title of President’s Scholar, and according to her, the recognition increases her drive to achieve greatness.

“After all of the hard work and dedication to excel in my studies, it is an honor to be recognized for my commitment to excellence,” said Thomas, a psychology major and Olive Branch, Mississippi native. “Keeping up your grades while trying to maintain a social life can be challenging, but in the end, all of the hard work pays off. It encourages me to be the best that I can be.”

Thomas is one of over 800 scholars who were celebrated for their brilliant work in the classroom at the 77th Biannual Honors Convocation Thursday, March 22 in the Oakland Memorial Chapel. A total of 572 Dean’s Scholars and 266 President’s Scholars were honored for their efforts. Darryl Grennell, mayor for the city of Natchez, delivered the keynote speech at the ceremony.

Possessing love and happiness was the theme of Grennell’s speech. He encouraged the students to love their fields of study so that they can find happiness in their careers.

“You must have love for what you do, and you must be happy to be successful in your lives,” said Grennell. “In your various fields of academia, you’ve got to want to wake up every morning excited about what you plan to do professionally. When you love what you do, it will tenaciously bind itself to your brains.”

La’Kendra Jones, a Dean’s Scholar majoring in child development, feels proud of her academic achievement. She said that becoming a Dean’s Scholar is a testament to her strong work ethic.

“I have always pushed myself to be the best that I can be,” said Jones, a Port Gibson, Mississippi native. “I always strive for perfection and excellence.”

Dr. John Igwebuike, vice provost for Academic Affairs and Student Records, commended the scholars for their achievement.

“We get to see Alcorn at its absolute best,” said Igwebuike. “We’re here to celebrate the stellar academic achievements of our most outstanding students. They have worked hard and demonstrated cognitive ability, mental toughness and intellectual agility.”