EKU Provided a Variety of Mentors for Commencement Speaker

Published on May 18, 2022

As Haven Jacob looked back on her Eastern Kentucky University experiences, she realized that she has accomplished much as a student and she has grown as a young woman. But she said those successes and growth weren’t completed all on her own but were encouraged by a variety of people who have made EKU a great place to learn.

“Although there are more mentors and classes that contributed to my journey than I have time to list, there are a few that have always been in the forefront of my mind as I strived for success,” Jacob said. “You see, a university is nothing without the people that comprise it. Here at EKU, you not only won’t, but are not allowed, to fight your battles alone. The people of EKU have transformed a girl who had given up on her dreams into a scholar, a confident researcher, a grateful woman and an excited future physician.” 

Jacob shared thoughts with graduates attending EKU’s 2022 Spring Commencement Ceremonies for the College of Health Sciences, the College of Justice, Safety, and Military Science, and the College of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics on Friday, May 13. Jacob graduated with a degree in biomedical sciences with minors in chemistry and psychology. She will continue her studies at the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine with hopes to return to Richmond to open a medical practice. 

“Eastern Kentucky University is a place that prides itself as the ‘School of Opportunity,’ and after a short four years here, I can confidently say that this statement is nothing short of the truth.” 

The opportunities Jacob took during her EKU experience were many, including leading an honors society and representing the group as a Homecoming candidate, founding an organization for survivors of sexual violence, publishing her research and serving as a campus tour guide.

After taking some time to thank those who were instrumental in her four years at EKU, Jacob addressed her fellow graduates. 

“As we go our separate ways, I urge you to become the hero of your own story because you are the only one who can write the story that you were meant to tell,” she said “So, as you walk in your journey, remember the words of our professors: speak with confidence, find strength in your weaknesses, see the possible in the impossible, keep learning, face your fears, fight with love and remember that this life is about who you are more than what you do. It’s our turn to change the world. So together, let’s show them what we’re made of.”

EKU recognized 2,292 degree candidates from its six academic colleges during its spring commencement ceremonies. 

View the ceremony in its entirety on our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6RbnTrYY7GQ