Ƶ Honors Class of 2024

More than 500 University of Pikeville (Ƶ) students celebrated their achievements by earning their degrees during the spring commencement ceremonies for undergraduate, graduate and health professions on Saturday, May 4, at the Appalachian Wireless Arena. Graduates and families were able to attend the in-person ceremonies or watch virtually via livestream.

The twenty-fourth commencement of the Kentucky College of Osteopathic Medicine (KYCOM) and, for the fifth time, the Kentucky College of Optometry (KYCO) recognized a tremendous group of physicians and optometric servants.

The keynote speaker for the health professions ceremony was Tim Robinson, Jr., founder and CEO of Addiction Recovery Care, LLC. Robinson addressed the future medical leaders by inspiring them to overcome obstacles and follow their purpose and destiny. 

“You should be proud of yourself and this graduation should be a celebration. Not many people have achieved the academic accomplishments that you have in this room,” said Robinson. “You will have the opportunity to be someone that God can use to change the trajectory of someone else’s life. People did it for me. You can too.” 

During the undergraduate ceremony, Ƶ President Burton J. Webb, Ph.D., extended congratulations on behalf of the university as the students begin the next exciting chapter of their lives. 

“We are proud of you, we want the best for you, and we stand ready to continue to help you as you build a life well-lived,” said Webb. “You are now at the beginning of your life of work and service to humanity. It’s my hope for you that you will have the opportunity to experience that joy that comes from making someone else’s life better. We share in that joy because we are a little part of you, as you will always be a little part of us. Our calling is to prepare you.”

Charles “Rusty” Justice, co-founder of Bit Source, delivered the undergraduate ceremony’s keynote address, encouraging the new graduates to be the next great generation of enlightened leaders who make Appalachia and the country better, leveraging their relationships and experience gained during their college years.  

“Your time at Ƶ has prepared you well for this challenge. During your time on the hill you have experienced an intellectual and cultural immersion that has forever changed you,” said Justice. “Use the knowledge and relationships you have gained here wisely and wherever life leads you, whether that means staying in the mountains or going far away, they will serve you and us very well. Remind yourself that no matter what course you are traveling, you will always have a home here at Ƶ.”

For more ceremony information, visit upike.edu/commencement.