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Class of Spring 2024 Success Stories: Where Are They Headed? - Part Four

The Class of Spring 2024 celebrated commencement on Friday, May 10. Witnessing the excitement and sense of accomplishment radiating from our graduates was truly inspiring. We invite you to read these profiles and to browse through our Spring 2024 Commencement photo album.


Juliana McKoy

Juliana McKoy

Major: Nursing

Hometown: Winston-Salem

I was a member of multiple organizations on campus, including the NAACP, the Student Nurses Association, Active Minds, and the Epsilon Tau Sigma Honor Society. I was also a Legacy Leader and helped with the Rams at home events for prospective students.

How did WSSU help you develop as a person?

Being a student at WSSU has really helped me to step out of my shell and meet new people. Being here has also pushed me to be a better student and person as well. I have also been able to meet a lot of people that I look up to and who push me to do better. I have also become more confident and outspoken since being here.

Next step: I will be starting my career as a registered nurse in a hospital here in North Carolina. Eventually, I would like to go back to school and get my Doctorate in Nursing Practice to become a nurse practitioner.

Adrian Grinage

Major: Justice Studies

Hometown: Washington, DC

Activities: I was involved with DMV Metro Rams (President '22-'24, Mister DMV Metro Ram '22-'23) Beta Iota Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. (Treasurer '22-'23, President '23-'24, Mister Old Gold and Black '23-'24) National Pan Hellenic Counsel (President '22-'23, Social media coordinator '23-'24, Alpha Phi Alpha Representative '22-'24)

How has WSSU helped to develop you as a person?

Attending an HBCU offers a unique journey of personal growth, academic excellence, leadership development and civic engagement. Through a supportive faculty community and opportunities for leadership, WSSU has developed me to have the opportunity to foster a deeper cultural identity and expand my perspective through diverse experiences, sharpening academic skills, nurturing leadership abilities and instilling a commitment to social activism.

What will you miss most about WSSU?

The friends I met and memories! I met my lifetime friends. The vibe and energy you get on campus by peers and alumni is unmatched. I created a lot of memories here that I will never forget. Being a part of different crowds of people that always had the same mindset to be better than yesterday and be at the top of their desired fields has driven me.

Next step: I will be relocating back to Washington, DC, to work for the Federal Air Marshall Service

Adrian Grinage

Sasha Williams

Sasha Williams

Major: Fine Arts

Hometown: Clayton, NV

Activities: I was a part of the Red Sea of Sound Band, symphonic band, and fine arts-related activities and events

How has WSSU prepared you to pursue your ultimate goals?

WSSU has prepared me for goals I couldn’t have imagined obtaining. The preparation came from wise counsel from my department to help guide the way. Faculty and staff shared several opportunities with me, listened attentively and provided encouragement when I needed it.

Next Step: I will continue with my small businesses for my artwork and natural hair braiding. I will also become the art teacher I’ve always wanted to be for K-12 schools. This should help prepare me for my transition to graduate school so I can become a fine arts professor.

Kaylon White

Major: Medical Laboratory Science

Hometown: Richmond, VA


Lambda Tau President, Honor Society for Medical Laboratory Science students, Spring 2023-Spring 2024; Active Minds President, mental health organization, 2023-2024; 2 Up 2 Down Vice-President, organization for Virginia natives, 2023-2024; Legacy Leader, an aid for incoming freshman and transfer students, 2023-2024; Epiphany Modeling Troupe president, 2022-2023; Active Minds vice president, 2022-2023; C.H.A.R.M. event coordinator, organization for the matriculation of women/girls, 2021-2022; Ragin' Rams member, a school spirit organization, 2021-2022; and DMV Metro Rams member, organization for DMV students, 2020-2022.

How has WSSU helped to develop you as a person?

WSSU has helped me to become the woman that I am today in numerous ways. At Winston-Salem State University, I have learned what it truly means to advocate for myself and my peers. At WSSU, we are the majority, but in this country, we are the minority and being taught how to properly advocate for myself has put me into rooms that I would have never imagined to be possible. WSSU has also allowed me to develop into a leader through the various organizations that I have been involved in, as well as teaching me to be confident in my abilities. To be confident in ones’ knowledge, abilities and overall self-esteem has been a pivotal part in finding myself and becoming the woman that I am today. Winston-Salem State University has helped me develop academically but also personally. For that I am forever grateful!

Next step: I am proud to announce that my next step will be entering the 2024 cohort of WSSU's Master of Healthcare Administration program. Additionally, I have accepted the Blood Banker II role with UVA Health and will be moving to Charlottesville, VA. Landing this role before walking the stage to get my degree has been a blessing and obtaining my master's degree will allow me to further develop my career and depart to serve!

Kaylon White

Sydnee Burnette

Sydnee Burnette

Major: Business administration with a concentration of management

Hometown: Greensboro, NC

Activities: Faith Walkers

How has WSSU helped to develop you as a person?

WSSU has helped me to develop as a person by giving me the tools and community to help build my character. WSSU has also provided me with a safe space and the tools and resources to help me.

Next step: I will be continuing my managerial experience with CVS as an operations manager and completing my certification for my pharmacy tech license. I will also be taking on my new position supervising the pharmacy in my store.

Ciara Norris

Major: Masters in Teaching Elementary Education

Hometown: High Point, NC

How has WSSU prepared you for your ultimate goals?

WSSU has prepared me to pursue my ultimate goals in several ways. It provided me with a strong foundation of knowledge and skills through rigorous instruction tailored to my interests and aspirations. The supportive environment and dedicated faculty at WSSU has equipped me with the expertise and confidence needed to excel in education.

Moreover, my experience has instilled in me a deep sense of cultural identity and community pride, empowering me to navigate the complexities of the professional world with resilience and determination. The rich history and traditions of WSSU have inspired me to strive for excellence and to make meaningful contributions to my community and beyond.

Next Step: I will remain in the realm of education but transition away from the traditional classroom setting. My focus will be on working directly with children in alternative capacities, aiming to make a meaningful impact on their educational journey outside of conventional classroom walls. I am also considering continuing my education and going back to get a Ph.D. in Education.


Ciara Norris

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