Leslee Lynch and Chris Moline
All 244 graduates have unique stories to share about how their R-MC experiences
and liberal arts education helped prepare them for the real world after graduation.
Many students participated in regional, national and international internships,
conducted research with their professors through the Schapiro Undergraduate Research
Fellowship (SURF) program or studied abroad.
The senior speaker for the class of 2010 was Kathleen “Kat” Chapman
of Virginia Beach, Virginia. She graduated with a bachelor’s Degree in
psychology and a minor in biology. Chapman’s
non-profit work at R-MC has inspired her to pursue a Master’s Degree in Social Work.
She plans to enroll at Boston College in the fall and eventually find work in non-profit
A Dean’s List student, Chapman was a member of Psi Chi Psychology Honor Society,
Beta Beta Beta Biological Honor Society, Omicron Delta Kappa Leadership Society
and Order of Omega Greek Leadership Society. She received the 2008 R-MC Volunteer
of the Year Award and served as Vice-President and President of the R-MC chapter
of Habitat for Humanity and of the Omicron Zeta chapter of Delta Zeta. She was actively
engaged in the life of the College and worked as an Orientation Leader, a Yellow
Jacket Tour Guide and an Admissions Counselor Assistant. During R-MC’s January Term,
Chapman studied abroad in South Africa and the Galápagos Islands.
Heang Sok was an international student from Phnom Penh, Cambodia.
He graduated with a 4.0 grade point average and a bachelor’s degree in
computer science and accounting.
Sok was a member of R-MC’S Habitat for Humanity chapter and, in 2009, traveled to
Biloxi, Mississippi to help rebuild homes for victims of Hurricane Katrina. He also
participated in the R-MC Career Center’s Access CEO Program, which was launched
in fall 2008. Access CEO is a mentoring program for juniors and senior that provides
them the opportunity to learn from seasoned top local executives and from one another.
In addition, Sok worked as a Web assistant in R-MC’s Marketing & Communications
department, where he was responsible for editing and updating information on the
College’s Web site. After finishing his graduation requirements in December 2009,
Sok began working near Boston, Massachusetts as a software engineer for Lattix.
Sok’s story is significant because he was initially denied an F-1 student visa at
the U.S. Embassy in Cambodia in July 2006. R-MC President Robert Lindgren contacted
United States Congressman Eric Cantor’s office, who in turn, inquired about Sok’s
status with the Embassy in Phnom Penh. Shortly thereafter Sok was granted his F-1
visa and – the rest is history!
Maria Summers graduated with a bachelor’s degree in chemistry and
a minor in biology. While at R-MC, Maria spearheaded fundraising for Operation Smile.
It’s an organization that is close to her heart since she was born with a bilateral
cleft lip and palate, which was repaired when she was a child. While at R-MC, Summers
raised close to $1500, which was enough to pay for surgery for six children. In
2008, she traveled with Operation Smile to Agadir, Morocco and served as their Patient
Imaging Technician. After graduation, she hopes to be accepted into the Physician’s
Assistant Program at Eastern Virginia Medical School. Summers is from Powhatan,
Virginia and is the daughter of David and Lauren Summers.
Michael Acutt was an international student from Durban, South Africa.
He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in economics and business. One of the highlights
of Acutt’s college experience was getting the opportunity to travel to Chile as
a member of the R-MC Men’s Basketball team. The team played both college and professional
games. Acutt says his lasting impression was the beauty of the Andes Mountains,
which surround Santiago, Chile. After graduation, he plans to enroll in graduate
school and work towards earning a master’s in business administration. He is the
son of Paul Acutt and Yvonne Paul.
Zachary “Zach” Basham graduated with a bachelor’s degree in political
science and a minor in ethics. During his senior year at R-MC, Basham coordinated
a fundraising effort that raised close to $20,000 for the Habitat for Humanity Alternative
Spring Break Trip. After graduation, he plans to find employment in fundraising
or medical equipment sales. He is from Nellysford, Virginia and is the son of Ed
and Karen Basham.
Jamie Shifrin graduated with a bachelor’s degree in biology. After
graduation, she will begin working in sales for New York Life in Richmond, Virginia.
She also plans to attend graduate school in the near future. Shifrin is from Baltimore,
Maryland and is the daughter of Jim and Patsy Shifrin.
Ashley Smith, from Hampstead, Maryland, graduated with honors,
with a bachelor’s degree in biology and chemistry. In order to graduate with honors,
she completed a year-long independent research project titled Biomagnification and
Trophic Transfer of Polychlorinated Biphenyls in the Food Web of the James
River Near Richmond, Virginia. Smith analyzed sediment and invertebrates
that she sampled from the James River in an effort to detect polychlorinated biphenyls
(PCBs), a pollutant derived from plastic materials that is found in our waterways.
Smith was in the Honors Program, Kappa Alpha Theta sorority and served as a Campus
Ambassador. She has spent J-term in Hawaii studying humpback whale behavior and
also in Australia and New Zealand, studying the chemistry of wine-making.
Smith will attend the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University
in North Grafton, Massachusetts, one of only 28 veterinary schools in the country.
“I chose Tufts because it has a very similar atmosphere to R-MC,” she says. Smith
eventually wants to work in the area of small animal medicine (dogs and cats) or
work with marine mammals.
Chris Moline graduated with a bachelor’s degree in biology and
environmental studies. After graduation, he will work as a research assistant in
R-MC’s biology department. He will continue research that he began in R-MC’s Schapiro
Undergraduate Research Fellowship program (SURF) about flies, their eggs and leukemia.
Moline recently presented this research to a national conference. His post-graduation
plans also include getting married on June 4, 2010, just one week after Commencement.
He will wed fellow R-MC student Leslee Anne Lynch, who graduated
with a bachelor’s degree in biology and minor in ethics. Moline is from Warrenton,
Virginia and Lynch is from Ladysmith, Virginia.