Ohio Wesleyan graduates Class of 2022

DELAWARE, OH — Ohio Wesleyan University held its 178th commencement ceremony on May 7, celebrating its Class of 2022.

Local residents graduating this spring are:

Mayson Martin of Mount Gilead earned a Bachelor of Science degree summa cum laude and was a Psychology and Quantitative Economics major and a Data Analytics and History minor.

Josh Plaster of Waldo earned a Bachelor of Arts degree magna cum laude and was a Business (Marketing Concentration) major.

Erica Sardinha of Marengo earned a Bachelor of Arts degree and was a Health and Human Kinetics (Exercise Science) major .

Keynote speaker Amy Acton, M.D., M.P.H., encouraged the new graduates to “get in some John Lewis good trouble … create the conditions in which all of us can lead flourishing lives … (and) lead with courage and compassion.”

“You are not an ordinary generation,” said Acton, who served as the senior health adviser to Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine during the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. “Because we’ve never before had the entire world go through the same thing at the same time in quite this way.

“I’ve started to think of you as Generation C, and that is not for just COVID, or chaos, or all of the challenges you have faced,” said Acton, who was awarded a 2021 Profile in Courage Award from the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation for her pandemic leadership. “But I think of it for your courage, for your compassion, that you’re collaborative, that you’re change agents.”

President Rock Jones, Ph.D., congratulated the Class of 2022 for persevering through a pandemic and urging them to use their OWU educations to improve the world.

“You were less than halfway through your time at OWU when the campus closed and you went home,” Jones said, recalling the March 2020 mandate. “Remarkably, your education did not end. In due time, you returned to campus, and today we are back in front of Merrick Hall celebrating the unique accomplishments of the bold and irrepressible Class of 2022. …

“Now you look ahead, with a lifetime of opportunity in front of you,” Jones said. “You are more than ready, and we are more than eager to watch, as we are fully confident that you who have created yourselves before our very eyes will make an enormous impact on the world that awaits.”