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246 earn degrees in UOG online ceremony - The Guam Daily Post

246 earn degrees in UOG online ceremony - The Guam Daily Post


246 earn degrees in UOG online ceremony - The Guam Daily Post

Posted: 27 Dec 2020 06:00 AM PST

The University of Guam conferred degrees to 246 graduates at its ceremony held online Sunday.

With 85 receiving master's degrees, it was the largest number of master's degrees ever conferred by the university in a semester, more than half of which were in education specializations, according to a press release from UOG.

Bachelor's degree recipients totaled 161, the majority coming from the School of Business and Public Administration.

"I don't have to tell this audience that these are unprecedented times and that we're all living through a historic challenge," said UOG President Thomas Krise. "But this class of graduates of the University of Guam has been resilient and flexible and supportive in the spirit of the CHamoru values of chenchule' and inafa'maolek."

Valedictorian overcame ADHD

Class valedictorian Maya D. Nanpei expressed how she found a sense of belonging and support at UOG that helped her overcome the attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, she had struggled with in high school.

"I hope that we leave our time at UOG feeling like we belonged to something outside of ourselves and use that feeling to inspire us in future endeavors," she said.

As an English literature major, she said she hopes her fellow graduates are able to find words to keep them connected with the people who matter most.

"... My time as a Triton, specifically in the English program, has taught me that words are truly what bind people together. This is especially true in our current situation, as the only way to safely express our love for one another is through words."

Physician, UOG alumnus featured speaker

The keynote speech was delivered by Dr. Edison P. Manaloto, a two-time UOG alumnus and the 2006 UOG valedictorian, who this year returned to Guam as a medical doctor at Guam Regional Medical City.

As an undergraduate, he said, he proclaimed in one class that in five years, he would hold a bachelor's degree and a master's degree, and become a certified public accountant, but he remembers some of his classmates were not dreaming as big.

"The problem was not a lack of talent or skill – that is abundant – but an inherent fear to dream and to dream big," he said. Looking back, I realized a false sense of insecurity that surrounds many of our island's youth growing up. ... Many fail to see their own uniqueness and talents. They fail to claim what is rightfully theirs, which is a seat at the table."

Manaloto earned his bachelor's degree in accounting in 2006 and a master's degree in public administration in 2007, both from the University of Guam, and became a certified public accountant in 2008 as well as a certified governmental financial manager. Later, seeing the pressing need for medical professionals in Guam, he applied to medical school at De La Salle Health Sciences Institute in the Philippines and became a doctor of medicine in 2015, completing his residency at the University of Hawaii this past June.

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