June 6, 2013

The College of Engineering held its Spring 2013 diploma ceremony in the LSU Pete Maravich Assembly Center, conferring 431 Bachelor of Science degrees, 38 Master of Science degrees and 26 Ph.D. degrees. This year's graduating class contained seven Distinguished Communicators. An additional 38 students were recognized as honor graduates, achieving outstanding cumulative grade-point averages (GPA) throughout college. Thirteen students achieved Cum Laude honors, 11 students achieved Magna Cum Laude honors and 14 students achieved Summa Cum Laude honors. Of note, LSU College of Engineering graduates represented 35 Louisiana parishes, 14 states and 28 foreign countries.

Four College of Engineering seniors received University Medals, awarded for graduating with perfect undergraduate GPAs: Kelly Clement, mechanical engineering major from Garyville, La.; Kalpanee Gunasingha, chemical engineering major from Baton Rouge, La.; Kit Hymel, computer science major from Ponchatoula, La.; and Vincent Tonagel, petroleum engineering major from Abita Springs, La. 

In another tradition, the College of Engineering honors those graduates who have earned the highest GPA. These four graduates were also presented with the Edward McLaughlin Dean’s Medal of Excellence for earning a perfect 4.00 GPA. The award commemorates McLaughlin's 28-year LSU career as professor, researcher, department chair and dean.

Class representative and computer science graduate Andre Wiggins addressed the students and guests at the ceremony.

“As we walk across this stage tonight and transform from the engineers of tomorrow into the engineers of today, let's not get caught up in the tedious day in, day out troubles,” Wiggins said. “Let's endeavor as a generation and the graduating class of 2013 to change to world.”

LSU also honored 32 graduating students with the Distinguished Communicator Award, seven of which were engineering graduates. These students earned this honor by meeting high standards set by faculty in various colleges and by the LSU Communication across the Curriculum program. The students earned high GPAs in communication-intensive courses – based on written, spoken, visual and technological communication – and have built digital portfolios displayed as public websites that include their communication projects from courses, internships, leadership roles and public service. Those honored from the College of Engineering includes Ashley Barker, Theresa Garcia, Kalpanee Gunasingha, Kori Lutenbacher, Joe Poynot Jr., Marcus Toussaint and Melvin Triay, IV.

Eighteen graduates were commissioned during the LSU Spring Commissioning Ceremony on Thursday, May 16, at the Cox Communications Academic Center for Student-Athletes. Retired Maj. Gen. James W. Graves was the guest speaker for the ceremony. He served as the assistant to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff for Reserve Matters at the Pentagon. Four College of Engineering graduates were from the LSU Army ROTC program and one from the Southern University Navy ROTC program. Those commissioned in the Air Force include Myles Delcambre, mechanical engineering; Julie Quach, computer engineering; Caleb Shotwell, electrical engineering; and Perry Van Zandt, mechanical engineering. Jonathan Delatte, chemical engineering, was commissioned in the United States Marine Corps.  

Four College of Engineering students were among 78 students that graduated from the LSU Honors College. These students include Jose Amaya, computer engineering; Kalpanee Gunasingha, chemical engineering; Kit Hymel, computer science; and Brian Poulin, computer science.

Matt Fury, Chris Mericas, Aaaron Moore and Clay Spencer were student athletes who also graduated with a BS in engineering. Student athlete Tabari Williams graduated with a BS in computer science.

LSU held its 280th commencement exercises on May 16 and 17, conferring 3,735 students. The main ceremony was held in the Pete Maravich Assembly Center and individual colleges held separate diploma ceremonies at various locations around the Baton Rouge campus. ABC News and NPR’s Cokie Roberts delivered the commencement address. 


Article written by Elise Bernard, communications intern. For more information, contact Mimi LaValle, College of Engineering, mlavall@lsu.edu or (225) 578-5706. 

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