It’s that time of year when we’re celebrating graduates, but this year’s class is like none before. The Class of 2020 will be remembered in history as the class who completed their degrees amid a worldwide pandemic and set off to pursue passions and careers in a world that is changing by the moment.
All TCU graduates have a remarkable story to share, and it was a challenge to select these few for our roundup. From launching new businesses and nonprofits to serving others through nursing and leadership programs—these Horned Frogs are a force for the greater good and we can’t wait to see their leadership and creativity in action. Throughout the weekend of May 9 (which would have been their commencement weekend) we’ll be celebrating the Horned Frog Class of 2020 virtually – and we’ll be back with more celebrations come Aug. 8 for the rescheduled commencement ceremonies.
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Fontana, Wisconsin (Bob Schieffer College of Communication: Strategic Communication)
Solving communication issues for the future of mass transportation
During a 2019 study abroad trip to Edinburgh, Scotland, with the Department of Strategic Communication, Fontana Frazier and her class stumbled upon a free public talk by HYPED, a student society at the University of Edinburgh committed to advancing the development of Hyperloop, Elon Musk’s idea for the future of mass transportation. Frazier asked a question about how the different groups that were involved in Hyperloop communicated. Upon learning that the HYPED team was experiencing communication issues, Jaqueline Lambiase, professor and chair of the department, gave the Edinburgh students her card, inviting them to contact her. That gesture led to the class project for Lambiase’s campaigns class this spring semester. “Fontana just closed the loop today by sending our plans and materials to the HYPED team in Edinburgh,” Lambiase said. “She provided leadership to the class all year.” Read more.
San Angelo, Texas (College of Education: Youth Advocacy & Educational Studies)
“Possibility Package” idea connects consumers with non-profits
Jordan Waters found a way to combine her interest in advocacy and entrepreneurship, thanks to her degree program in the College of Education and the Shaddock CREATE Competition, hosted by the Neeley School of Business. She pitched her project this past fall and received a grant and access to mentoring workshops to develop her idea into a business. Waters’ idea, the Possibility Package, is a subscription-based service box that connects nonprofits and for-profits with a cause to an average consumer who just wants to do some good. She hopes that her project, developed with a TCU alumna, will become a reality in the future, and considers it may evolve to support nonprofits during the pandemic. Waters’ inspiration came while taking the Social Entrepreneurship class. Youth Advocacy & Educational Studies is a non-certification degree for students interested in advocacy and education. Read more.
Overland Park, Kansas (College of Fine Arts: Theatre)
Theatre major builds leadership program while developing her own
Alli Franken chose to attend TCU because she believed it to be a university where she would not only grow in her craft, but also as a human being. “The TCU culture is unlike any other, always going the extra mile for their students and community.” Franken chose theatre because it creates compassion, empathy and authenticity in individuals and communities. While at TCU, Franken house managed the Trinity Shakespeare Festival, built a leadership program for a summer theatre camp in Kansas City, choreographed a musical and performed in two mainstage shows. She also spent a year with the comedy team, Senseless Acts of Comedy, and directed a benefit concert for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. Read more.
El Paso, Texas (College of Science & Engineering: Nutritional Sciences)
Passion for serving others leads to path of becoming dietitian
With a bachelor’s degree in exercise science in hand, Ray Seguin dove into a life of serving women in her community through fitness. After tearing her ACL, she moved back home to El Paso and interned with a physical therapist. After marrying and moving to Fort Worth, Seguin searched online for health-related programs to further her education and discovered the Coordinated Program in Dietetics at TCU. Drawing on a childhood memory of a dietitian teaching her how to feed her sibling through a tube, she decided she wanted to become a Registered Dietitian, which allows 20-25 hours of an internship in addition to classes. Read more.
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma (Harris College of Nursing & Health Sciences: Nursing)
Nursing student heads to New York to fight COVID-19
Paige Crowley is getting settled into her New York City apartment and is just finishing up orientation at her new job in a Manhattan hospital. The TCU senior hasn’t actually received her diploma yet but has completed all the requirements to graduate this semester with a bachelor’s degree in nursing. Moving to New York was Crowley’s plan, but everything intensified after the COVID-19 outbreak, which hit New York especially hard. She switched from applying for residency positions to applying for technician positions, which are called patient care associates in New York. This would allow her to go ahead and work while waiting for an opportunity to test for her New York nursing license. Two days after applying, Crowley received a call from Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan. Read more.
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma (John V. Roach Honors College: Political Science, CRES minor)
Launching new nonprofit to promote open-mindedness and combat exclusion
Honors student Ali Carter knows the power of education – he’s experienced it firsthand. He grew up in Oklahoma City, where he remembers watching athletes play football through the fence on the fields of an elite college preparatory school, Heritage Hall, until police shooed him away. Carter eventually attended Heritage Hall, where he was able to obtain an education that most of his peers did not. His experience and opportunities at Heritage Hall, and later, at TCU, inspired Carter and a group of friends to start a nonprofit organization, Foundation for Liberating Minds, to combat racism, sexism, classism, homophobia and other systems of oppression. According to its mission statement, FLM is dedicated to “enabling minds to promote open-mindedness without the exclusion rendered by our society.” Read more.
Portland, Oregon (Neeley School of Business: Business Information Systems and Supply Chain Management)
Milwaukee, Wisconsin (Neeley School of Business: Finance and Political Science)
Student leaders shine among top business schools in the nation
Seniors Rachael Haugh and Sarah Goldberg are featured in Poets & Quants 2020 Best & Brightest Business Majors among students from the top business schools in the country. The TCU Neeley seniors are singled out for their academic excellence, extracurricular leadership, character, potential, striking personal narrative and overall impact at TCU. Haugh and Goldberg are featured in profiles discussing their proudest achievements, favorite professors, lessons learned, advice and more.
Haugh is a BNSF Neeley Leader, LeaderKids mentor, University Life peer guide and manager for TCU Women’s Basketball. Haugh interned at Dell Technologies in Austin, Texas, and has a job waiting for her there upon graduation.
Goldberg is a member of Neeley Fellows, TCU Educational Investment Fund, Student Government Association, Chancellor’s Scholar, Club triathlon and soccer teams and is TCU Student Body Director of Mental Health and Wellness. Goldberg interned at Baird in Milwaukee and will return there for a career after graduating in May. Read more.