Commencement Stories

Journey to the Degree: Spring 2023 Graduates

Approximately 1,600 students, including nearly 300 graduate students will participate in the university’s spring 2023 commencement ceremonies Friday, May 12 and Saturday, May 13.

The journey has been great for many students. In their own words, soon-to-be alumni share their stories of perseverance, dedication, scholarship and innovation.

Milosh McNAdooJasmin Harrison | Kendall PetersonAdesewa MaselugboJeremiah PouncyTanae Lewis | Marvin Bagley Jr.


Milosh McAdooMilosh McAdoo

N.C. A&T Spring 2023 GraduateUndergraduate: Animal ScienceHometown: Hillsborough, NC 

“It was a normal day in March 2019. I was driving home from my high school in my green ‘98 Honda CRV when I stopped in front of my house. In my mailbox sat a big, white package with an A&T logo. My heart began to race with fear and excitement. I opened the package and saw that it contained a letter that started with “Congratulations…”. I did it. I earned a full-ride to A&T as a Cheatham White Scholar.

“Every person in my support network here at A&T has taught me something different, and those lessons contributed to my accomplishments as the person I have become in the last four years. When we find ourselves in places of success, it’s important that we reach back and help those who come after us. During my time at A&T, I served as a state officer for North Carolina FFA, became a White House HBCU Scholar, worked six different internships, been president and chair of Collegiate Farm Bureau and participated in other fellowships and scholarship programs. I don’t mention these to be boastful, but to share that these types of opportunities rarely come about when we’re on our own, but when we have people who love, support, and challenge us.” 

McAdoo will be working as an account coordinator for Midan Marketing after graduation, with plans to enroll in graduate school in the near future.


jasmin-harrison.jpegJasmin Harrison

N.C. A&T Spring 2023 GraduateUndergraduate: Dual Elementary Education and Special EducationHometown: Albany, New York 

When it comes to special education students, I think a lot of people think that because they have a disability, they can't reach their potential. But everyone is smart in their own way and has things that they're really good at doing. I love finding those things and empower them to want to learn other things as well. 

I student teach in an EC classroom grades three through five with students who have disabilities. I also student teach in a second-grade classroom. It’s been amazing. I’m the full-time teacher. Basically, the teacher in that classroom allows me to be the teacher. There are definitely ups and downs, but you build relationships with students and learn what they’re good at and what they enjoy. It becomes the best time in the world. 

I just accepted a job offer at Hickory Grove Elementary School in Charlotte, North Carolina. I will be an EC teacher for grades three through five. I’m super excited about having my own classroom. I love my students now so I’m sad to leave them. 

Being an education student at A&T has really helped me grow in ways that I wouldn’t have before. I presented at a conference. It’s cool to be in talking about things confidently because I learned them at A&T.

kendall-peterson.jpgKendall Peterson

Business administration 
Hometown: Greensboro, North Carolina 

My dad went to A&T. My brother went to A&T. Growing up, my mom worked here. I have always been on campus. It just feels like home. I feel at peace here and I wanted to continue the family legacy. 

“My senior year of high school, I took a marketing class and it really resonated with me and it felt like something I wanted to do growing up, so I decided to stick with business and keep it general so I could explore different aspects. 

Besides just marketing, I'm passionate about entrepreneurship. I want to be a business owner. I have a strange feeling that the world's going to change in a really big way, especially in a business sense and I have lots of ideas like personalized video games, within e-commerce, real estate properties and more. 

A&T has definitely taught me a closed mouth doesn't get fed. You need to speak up. Opportunities are always here. You just need to reach out. Always stay connected and network with people. Definitely get out of your comfort zone. It taught me to be a better person by talking to the next person or helping out the next person. There’s a family presence here. We help one each other out.

Following graduation, Kendall will be working at Amazon.

Adesewa MaselugboAdesewa Maselugbo

N.C. A&T Spring 2023
Graduate: NanoengineeringHometown: Nigeria

When I was searching for schools for my Ph.D. I was concerned about where I could fit in easily because I was changing cultures. So, I needed some place that would be like a middle ground of new culture and my culture. I found that here at A&T. 

After my Bachelor of Science in petroleum and gas engineering, I worked in an oil field. I was a production engineer on an oil field, which means a lot of smoke so seeing that I could see the effect it had on surrounding grasses, I knew I didn’t want to continue in that line of destroying the Environment. So, I looked for another type of energy that would be more sustainable and renewable. I discovered nano energy. From there, I discovered the nano engineering department at A&T. 

My research here is on nanoparticles. I focused on Boron Nitride nano materials. I tried to look at how I could manipulate them to be better suited for several applications.  

One thing I have gotten from A&T is confidence in terms of believing more in myself. My adviser always tells me, ‘Adesewa, I know that you know, you can do it. Stop shying away from it.’  

In five to 10 years, I want to be the head of a research team. I love research so much so that I want to continue that part of my journey.

jeremiah-pouncy-2.jpgJeremiah Pouncy

N.C. A&T Spring 2023
Undergraduate: Animal Science
Hometown: Fredericksburg, Virginia

In general, less than 2% of all vets are Black and less than 1% are black males. My major is animal science, but I have two minors, one in chemistry and one in entrepreneurship. After graduation, I will be going to Ithaca, New York, and attend Cornell University to get my Doctor of Veterinary Medicine. I plan to specialize in exotics. From there I would like to open a veterinary clinic and get into the international veterinary business touching conservation, research, and a multitude of other things. 

The first book that I wrote was “Awakening of the End.” It's a sci-fi novel based on superpowers. It's also based in South Africa. I tried to convey the message that we should be able to empathize and sympathize with others, which can save the world, or at least make the world a better place. The second book that I published was “His Burdens.” Both are on Amazon. I was able to have a book signing this past semester here at the North Carolina A&T Bookstore. I always want to give back to my community and make sure the next generation of young Black individuals across the world are taken care of. A&T has enabled me to see black excellence face to face. It has been one of the biggest confidence boosters throughout my entire life.



Tanae LewisTanae Lewis

N.C. A&T Spring 2023
Undergraduate: Chemistry
Hometown: Bahamas

I am originally from the Bahamas, but I moved to Raleigh, North Carolina about six years ago. My major was chemistry. I had two internships; one was at the National Institute of Environmental Health Science. There I focused on a neurodegenerative disease called pontus hypoplasia. Then I worked at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill focusing on other primary neurodegenerative diseases.

After I graduate, I will be attending Johns Hopkins University to pursue my biological chemistry with a focus in neuroscience.

I plan to work in academia and start my own lab focusing on Alzheimer's disease while also being active within the DEI community at my institution to help minorities in the STEM space.

I would definitely advocate for HBCUs. I didn't consider it at first honestly, because coming from another country, I wasn't as familiar with HBCUs. Coming here just changed me completely. It’s great just being in a like-minded space, with individuals that look like you. And even if you're competing in class, it’s not just to see who can do better, but we’re pushing each other forward. We’re in the same boat trying to make everyone succeed.



Marvin Bagley JrMarvin Bagley Jr.

N.C. A&T Spring 2023
Aggies at the Goal Line
Hometown: Durham, North Carolina

I enrolled at A&T for the first time in the fall of 1992. As far as my major was concerned, honestly, it was football. You have to understand that I initially came to college to escape a really tough situation at home. I didn't have very much support. College was my escape. I received a football scholarship, and I ran with it. I was a wide receiver. I didn't even know what majors were available when I first came to college, but I knew I was there to play football. I eventually landed on a major in architectural engineering because I wanted to build. I minored in physical education. 

Mostly, I wanted to pursue a professional football career. And I did. I left school before graduating and entered the draft. I eventually signed a free agent contract with New Orleans in 1997. But I realized I wasn’t ready. Physically, yes, but there were a lot of off the field things that I had to learn. Ultimately, they cut me. Then I signed an arena football contract, but injuries and life took a toll, and I never made it back to the NFL. I’m not ashamed to say that I struggled with alcohol abuse after that and of course procrastination and other responsibilities. 

But I always knew I could do the work required for my degree. A little over a year ago, I stopped drinking. I had so much more clarity. I made a few phone calls and God opened doors and resources through the Aggies at the Goal Line program. I always knew how important it was to graduate so I started an endowment because I remember the struggles I had. Financially, it was tough. Everybody wants to graduate. If not, you would have never enrolled. Just make your mind up and get it done. Finishing what I started over 30 years ago makes this one of the happiest times in my life.