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Principled leaders forging a path to excellence

Moving Foward: The Class of 2014

Name: Ryan J. Boodee, First Honor Graduate, S.C. Corps of Cadets

Degree: Bachelor of Science, Physics

Hometown: Raleigh, North Carolina

"I am hiking the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine, fulfilling a lifelong dream. I have been accepted to four aerospace engineering graduate schools and am awaiting word on an OCS slot as a US Navy Aviator. I plan to attend Texas A & M University. Within five years I plan to have a degree in aerospace engineering after researching hypersonic propulsion techniques in hopes of improving the agility of the U.S. military's airpower and perhaps create a cheaper mechanism to achieve orbit.Ryan J. Boodee accepting an award

The Citadel has provided more than just a college education to me—it has given me unparalleled experiences with classes, research, and leadership and ethics training. Not only have I been able to attend classes and learn that way, I have also been able to create classes in things that interest meI have had the opportunity to independent study aerodynamics with Dr. Berlinghieri. Also while at The Citadel, I have been able to be a part of many world-class research teams, focused on studying aerodynamics, creating novel ion traps, and even building a telescope for a commercial spaceflight company. Perhaps even more invaluable than all of my classwork and research experiences are the lessons in leadership I have learned. I have served as Second Battalion executive officer, a position in which I have garnered skills in the daunting tasks of management and peer leadership.

Upon leaving The Citadel, I will enter the workforce with confidence, having received outstanding training in academics and research while also having learned valuable lessons in ethics and leadership. And, perhaps most importantly, I've learned that through the honor and diligence instilled in me by my Alma Mater, I can be a valuable member of any team I am privileged to work on."

Ryan J. Boodee, Class of 2014

“As a student Mr. Boodee can be ranked in my top one percent (out of more than 40 years of physics graduating classes). He has worked on the development of the ATSA optical photometer as part of his undergraduate research, presented results at national meetings and participated in three research experiences for undergraduates, the last of which was a repeat appointment where he was asked to return to manage the summer research experience. Boodee graduated as a 4.0 Honors student with a Bachelor of Science degree in Physics, a minor in Computer Science, and a minor in Aerospace Science. He was the president of The Citadel chapter of the Society of Physics Students, a member of the physics honor society, Sigma Pi Sigma, a battalion executive, and a member of the Dean's Inner Circle."

Joel Berlinghieri, Ph.D., professor and head of the Physics Department

 

Name: Byron D. Brooks,* The Citadel Graduate College

Degree: Master of Arts, Psychology - Clinical Counseling Byron Brooks

"The Citadel provided me with an atmosphere conducive to exploring my interests and tailoring them to my future. All of the faculty in the Psychology Department were very invested and focused on my development as a clinician, scholar, professional, and most importantly as a person."

Byron D. Brooks, The Citadel Graduate College Class of 2014, Doctoral student, East Tennessee State University, Clinical Health Psychology

*During 2013-2014 Brooks's research projects earned first and second place in a statewide competition by the S.C. Psychological Association.

 

Name: Erin K. Bucherl,* Boren Fellowship Awardee, S.C. Corps of Cadets

Degree: Bachelor of Science, Biology

Degree: Bachelor of Arts, Modern Languages

Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana

"I am thrilled and humbled by being awarded a Boren Fellowship. I am studying Swahili and interning in a hospital in Zanzibar, Tanzania, on a Boren Fellowship for the 2014-15 academic yeara very long way from my hometown of Indianapolis. After that I plan to return to attend The Citadel Graduate College in the biology program. My ultimate goal is to be a Navy physician's assistant, specializing in tropical diseases, and I want to work in global humanitarian health efforts."

Erin Bucherl, Class of 2014

*Bucherl was also the captain of The Citadel volleyball team and a two-time Star of the West Scholar for summer study in Germany in 2012 and 2013. Read Bucherl's guest column in The Post and Courier, here.

 

Name: 2nd Lt. Ryan Faucher, S.C. Corps of Cadets

Degree: Bachelor of Science, Electrical and Computer Engineering

Hometime: Live Oak, Florida2nd Lt. Ryan Faucher, The Citade

"I hope to build my career with the Air Force. I wanted to serve my country and thank all those who went before me to fight for our freedom. I also wanted a career that forced me out of my comfort zone and to pursue a career that was all about helping others. Another factor was because I majored in electrical engineering and the Air Force offered the best opportunities to allow me to use my major in my everyday life. Being a graduate of The Citadel has taught me that a great leader never sets himself above his followers except in carrying responsibilities and the first responsibility of a leader is to define reality. The last is to say thank you and in between you are a servant."

2nd Lt. Ryan Faucher


Name: Brent Grenda, OC, U.S. Navy, Col. Louis Shepherd LeTellier Award, S. C. Corps of Cadets

Degree: Bachelor of Science, Civil Engineering Brent Grenda, The Citadel

Hometown: Charleston, South Carolina

"Brent Grenda has distinguished himself by maintaining the highest GPA in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. He is a man of integrity and a leader among his peers. He earned Gold Star and Dean's List honors repeatedly for academic achievement. His role as lead hull designer and lead on creative design for the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) concrete canoe team illustrates his depth of skill as a creative thinker and problem solver. Mr. Grenda has enormous potential as a Naval officer and civil engineer."

Kevin Bower, Ph.D., P.E., Associate Professor and Department Head, Civil and Environmental Engineering, The Citadel

 

Name: D. Preston Hipps, Jr.,* Second Honor Graduate, Fulbright Scholar, S.C. Corps of Cadets

Degree: Bachelor of Arts, English

Hometown: Pelion, South CarolinaPreston Hipps, The Citadel

"As the chairman of the 2014 Honor Committee for the S.C. Corps of Cadets, it isn't difficult for me to say with conviction that the single most significant benefit of attending The Citadel has been the values that this place instills within its cadets and its graduates. Honor, trustworthiness, truth: these things have unfortunately become harder and harder to find outside of the walls The Citadel. To know that I am surrounded by a group of men and women who live by these values, and to know that alumni of this school continue to hold the same values sacred, is something that I could not have gotten anywhere else."

Preston Hipps, Jr., The Citadel Class of 2014

*Hipps earned Gold Stars for academic achievement every semester during his tenure at The Citadel. His Fulbright assignment is in Mexico. Following his Fulbright work, he will attend Harvard Law School.


Name: Landon Messal, The Citadel Graduate College

Landon Messal, The Citadel

Degree: Bachelor of Science, Civil Engineering

Position: Project Engineer, ADC Engineering Specialists, Columbia/Hanahan, S.C.

Hometown: Mt. Pleasant

"Graduating from The Citadel is like being admitted into a fraternity where loyalties to fellow alum are strong, especially here in Charleston. Many local businesses have former cadets in leadership positions and naturally they look to this fraternity to help them continue the growth of their business. I've now received two degrees: a Bachelor of Science degree in Plant Sciences from the University of Tennessee and a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from The Citadel's 2 + 2 program. The professors at The Citadel, especially in the School of Engineering, are far more engaged with the student, making themselves available before and after class. I feel like the teachers at The Citadel are more focused on teaching than their research. For this reason I will highly encourage my children to attend The Citadel."

Landon Messal, The Citadel Graduate College Class of 2014

"Mr. Landon Messal has distinguished himself by maintaining an excellent GPA while balancing the responsibilities of a full time job and family with small children. Despite this heavy load of responsibilities, he consistently contributed to the teaching and learning environment in meaningful ways."

Kevin Bower, Ph.D., P.E., Associate Professor and Department Head, Civil and Environmental Engineering, The Citadel

 

Name: Sergeant Josenrique Rocha,* Marine Enlisted Commissioning Program, Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce Enlisted Active Duty Service Person of the Year

Degree: Bachelor of Arts, Psychology

Hometown: Charleston, South CarolinaJosenrique Rocha, The Citadel

"The Citadel Navy ROTC Unit's very own Sergeant Josenrique Rocha, USMC was selected recently as the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce Enlisted Active Duty Service Person of the Year during the Chamber's 2014 Salute to the Military ceremony.

The award was presented by the 23rd Secretary of the Air Force, Deborah Lee James. Rocha is a Marine Enlisted Commissioning Education Program (MECEP) student at The Citadel. He is a senior majoring in psychology and is scheduled to graduate and be commissioned as a Marine Corps second lieutenant in August 2014. Rocha was one of 13 active duty service members nominated for this prestigious award out of over 20,000 local soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen. He was selected based on the criterion that nominees must demonstrate an active involvement and positive impact within the community through participation in activities that provide significant service to the Charleston region.

Over the past year, Rocha volunteered more than 225 hours in the local community, including working with local organizations such as Crisis Ministries, Ronald McDonald House, and Habitat for Humanity, Down Syndrome Association of the Lowcountry, and Hidden Wounds Foundation."

Colonel Thomas S. Clark III, USMC, Professor of Naval Science, The Citadel

*Rocha is a Marine martial arts instructor. He was also presented with the USAA Spirit Award upon commissiong in spring of 2014

 

Name: Nichole Clark Selazzo, The Hirshey Award, The Citadel Graduate College

Degree: Master of Education, Literacy EducationNichole Selazzo, The Citadel

Hometown: Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina

"I nominated Nicole Clark Selazzo for the Hirshey Award and would like to recognize her as an outstanding education graduate. She now teaches first grade at Jennie Moore Elementary School for The Creative Arts in Mt. Pleasant, S.C. She plays a significant role in helping transform the lives of low-achieving first grade students. Nicole is an outstanding teacher and was an outstanding graduate student with a 4.0. She has the personality and compassion that is so needed when working with first graders who have reading difficulties...truly, a remarkable individual. Receiving the Hirshey Award is a great honor from The Citadel Graduate College. The Hirshey award is given annually by the School of Education in honor of Charles Hirshey who served as head of education from 1969 to 1979 and was a pioneer in graduate education in the Lowcountry."

Dan Ouzts, Instructor, The Citadel School of Education


Name: Timothy D. Smith, Jr., S.C. Corps of Cadets

Degree: Bachelor of Science, Civil Engineering

Hometown: Gaffney, S.CTimothy Smith, The Citadel.

"Cadet Tim Smith's record of academic achievement includes Gold Stars for two semesters and the Dean's List Award for an additional four semesters. Cadet Smith has demonstrated excellence in academics and in addition, he has a strong commitment to helping others learn. Cadet Smith served as President of the Citadel Student Chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE). He has contributed to numerous ASCE chapter projects and team competitions. His leadership and vision has been the foundation of many successful programs and his initiative has helped students and faculty. He will go far in his career."

Kevin Bower, Ph.D., P.E., Associate Professor and Department Head, Civil and Environmental Engineering, The Citadel


Name: Marc Straniere, George C. Marshall Awardee, AROTC, S.C. Corps of Cadets

Degree: Bachelor of Science, Electrical Engineering

Position: Ft. Benning, Infantry Basic Officer Leader Course (Preparing for Ranger School and position at Ft. Benning with 34rd Infantry Division)Strainere and classmate Franklin McGuire on the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro

“I will be an infantry officer until I make the rank of captain—once that happens I will transfer into Military Intelligence. After working in intelligence I will eventually leave military service to work for a company like Lockheed Martin or Northrop Grumman contracting for the military. I chose the Army because of the great opportunities they offered while I was in college. I was able to attend Airborne School which had me jumping out of airplanes for a summer. That same summer the Army sent me over to Tanzania to teach English and American culture to school children while they taught me about their culture and traditions.

The Citadel made me realize these last four years that I can do anything if I work hard at it and stay focused. The Citadel provided me with an environment of structure and discipline that necessitated my personal development both academically and professionally, and I am excited to see where the future takes me."

Marc Straniere, Class of 2014

“Cadet Straniere is named the Department of the Army’s most outstanding senior cadet who has completed the Leadership Development Assessment Course, demonstrating leadership and scholastic qualities as that of a General Marshall.”

Col. Laurence Hutto, U.S. Army, The Citadel


Name: Megan Zalla,* The Citadel Graduate College

Degree: Master of Arts, Psychology – Clinical Counseling

Positon: Nationally Certified School Psychologist, Crisis Response Team, Anchorage School District

"Attending the nationally recognized School Psychology graduate program at The Citadel prepared me to be a scientific practitioner. The learning began in the classroom of Capers Hall and extended to my practicum and internship experiences. I consider the most significant benefit of the program to be the opportunities available for skill development, experience, and research. Our professors encouraged learning every step of the way."

Megan Zalla, Class of 2014

*Also fly-fishing in Alaska