Baker On Menu Of Commencement Speakers


Student speakers at university graduation ceremonies often are chosen based solely on academic performance. Corey Baker of Washington, Mo., will speak at Maryville University’s Commencement on Saturday, May 5, because of his work in the classroom and his involvement in the Maryville community.

“I was able to keep my life very balanced socially and academically, leaving me with wonderful friends, a great education and this amazing opportunity,” said Baker, who will graduate with a bachelor of arts degree in organizational leadership. He will be one of two student speakers at the ceremony; the other being Laurie Gill of Wildwood, who is receiving a master of arts degree in Education/Secondary Teaching & Inquiry with certification to teach secondary English. The keynote speaker will be David Robertson, music director of the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra.

Baker’s talk at Maryville’s Commencement will be a dress rehearsal for his ultimate career goal, which is to travel the country as a motivational speaker. “Over the past four years, I have been fortunate enough to travel around the state and speak to many high school and college students to promote leadership and activism,” he commented. “My lifelong goal is to implement a positive change wherever I am and have an amazing time doing it.”

Baker chose to attend Maryville because of its small campus and countless opportunities for involvement it presented. And he opened many of those doors of opportunity during his four years at the University. “I don’t know of many other schools where you can be a residential assistant, a pudding-wrestling referee and a Commencement speaker all in one year,” he joked.

During its Commencement, Maryville will confer a total of 902 degrees with 655 graduates expected to participate in the ceremony.

Maryville University, founded in 1872, is a private, coeducational institution offering approximately 50 undergraduate, seven master’s and two doctoral degree programs to 3,300 students. Ranked by U.S. News and World Report as one of America’s Best Colleges in the Midwest, Maryville University prepares its students for successful and meaningful careers by offering programs that integrate liberal arts with professional studies.

Among Maryville’s most recent graduates, 94 percent are employed or attending graduate school. Approximately 15,000 alumni work and live in the St. Louis region.