Randolph-Macon College celebrated Commencement on May 28, 2016 on the Frank E. Brown Fountain Plaza.
This year, R-MC welcomed the largest graduating class in its history—310—to the ranks of alumni. Following tradition, graduates marched across the “Red Brick Road,” located on the college's historic campus along the Janet Harvey Trivette ’78 Alumni Walkway. The name of each graduate will be imprinted on a brick and the walkway, which will eventually contain the names of every graduate dating back to the early 1900s.
Commencement Speaker and Honorary Degrees
R-MC graduates welcomed alumnus Haywood A. "HAP" Payne Jr. '68, who served as Commencement speaker.
Payne earned a B.S. in chemistry from Randolph-Macon College, where, in 1966, he became the college's first African American student. He earned an M.B.A. from the University of Pittsburgh in 1977, and he completed post-graduate work in Carnegie-Mellon University's Program for Senior Executives in 1994.
He joined Gulf Oil Corporation in 1970 as a systems analysis chemist and remained with the company after it merged with Chevron in 1984. Throughout his career, Payne held several management positions, and in 2010 he retired as president of Chevron Business and Real Estate Services.
Two honorary degrees were presented during the Commencement ceremony:
Haywood A. “HAP” Payne Jr. ’68 received the Honorary Doctor of Humanities degree.
Sue Carrell received the Honorary Doctor of Humanities degree.
Carrell earned her B.A. in French from Willamette University in Oregon, her M.A. in French from University of California at Berkeley, and her Ph.D. in French from The University of Virginia. She was a member of the Randolph-Macon faculty from 1975-1979.
An independent scholar, Carrell is currently editing a four-volume collection of the correspondence between the Comtesse Eléonore de Sabran and the Chevalier Stanislas-Jean de Boufflers, which took place before, during and after the French Revolution.
In 2011, Carrell received the Prix d’ Academie award from the Académie Française for her work.
The Bruce M. Unger Award for Retiring Faculty
John Rabung, Professor of Computer Science
Rabung joined the faculty in 1972-1974 in the mathematics department before returning in 1982 as a professor of computer science. He earned his B.A. from the University of Akron, and his M.A. and Ph.D. from Washington State University.
Rabung has taught a wide variety of courses during his tenure at R-MC, including Programming, Theory of Computation, and Numerical Calculus, and he served as chair of the Computer Science department from 1985-1992. He was the recipient of the United Methodist Award for Exemplary Teaching, the Samuel Nelson Gray Distinguished Professor Award, and the Thomas Branch Award for Teaching Excellence. In addition, he served as director of the First-Year Experience program from 2004-2007.
This year’s Senior Speaker, Kristin Nicole Kunz ’16, is a communication studies and economics/business major. A member of Delta Zeta, Kunz was a member of the Equestrian Team for two years and served for two years as an orientation leader and tour guide.
Kunz was inducted into Lambda Pi Eta, Rho Lambda and Order of Omega academic and Greek honor societies. She also completed three internships, all under the guidance of R-MC alumni. She studied abroad in England during January Term, and she is an active member of the college’s Leadership Fellows program.
Senior Class Gift
The Senior Class Gift Campaign educates Randolph-Macon College seniors on the importance of philanthropy. By working in tandem with the Randolph-Macon Office of Annual Giving to create a student-driven fundraising campaign, the Senior Class Gift Committee aims to make the seniors’ first giving experience enjoyable and meaningful. The hope is that as a result, the seniors will recognize the importance of their generosity and continue the tradition of giving as alumni.
Each senior was asked to make a donation to the college and the Class of 2016 Gift reflects the collective sum of all their contributions. The Class of 2016 raised a record-breaking total of more than $10,265 from 90% of their class.
Senior Success Stories
R-MC graduates are accomplished both in and out of the classroom, and leave prepared for a lifetime of success. Here are just a few stories about our remarkable students.
Neuroscience majors: Braeshaun Dozier, Emily Kirk, Noelle McKearney, Brooke Thompson, Brennan Terhune-Cotter