MSU Texas Spring 2021 graduate spotlight

Crege La Ronde proud of his First Gen success

Crege La Ronde has known his graduation day was coming. He has been counting down the days. But this accomplishment and walking across the stage at Kay Yeager Coliseum Saturday as part of the Spring 2021 Class at MSU Texas is not something the McCoy School of Science, Mathematics & Engineering graduate ever took for granted.

Completing his mission at Midwestern State University is meaningful to him and his family. “I am a first-generation college student,” La Ronde said. “My parents, who grew up in the Caribbean in the ‘70s and ‘80s, were not even given the opportunity to graduate from high school. Graduating from one of the more difficult programs here makes me feel both humbled and proud.”

La Ronde is graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Engineering. He plans to rest for a few weeks after graduation and hopes to enter the workforce in June. He is keeping his options open.

“I am ecstatic about graduating, and yes, I have been counting down the days,” he said. “I am excited to see what the future holds, and getting this far is one of the biggest moments of my life, so far. My ultimate life goal is to obtain my Ph.D. in engineering, work on the development of sustainable energy and infrastructure, and become a world leader. Whether that be through becoming an ambassador representing my country (of Dominica) internationally, or by becoming a business or academic leader later in life.”

La Ronde was active in his time at MSU Texas, including serving as the Student Government Association vice president. “Serving in the SGA gave me an opportunity to grow in leadership, allowed me to build on my communication abilities, and taught me how to effectively build professional relationships. All of those skills are greatly important in any workplace and with life in general. Having been elected to this leadership position has opened up doors allowing me to develop professionally, and I feel that it has added many years of wisdom to my life.”

He also served as the International Zone Chair on the National Society of Black Engineers regional board. “The mission of the organization is primarily to increase the number of Black engineers who excel academically, succeed professionally, and positively impact the community,” La Ronde said. “I focused on increasing international membership, working with students in Zimbabwe to develop an international chapter, and rallying to get scholarships dedicated to international students studying in the United States. I am very proud of the work of this organization to help get more minorities into STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) fields and to help them excel at it.”

He offered some advice for future engineering students. “Be vigilant and consistent in your studies, and build up close relationships with your professors,” La Ronde said. “My most memorable and most successful experiences in the program were on projects and initiatives which I worked on with my professors. Developing a professional relationship with those who can properly advise you is very important to your studies.” 

 

Crege La Ronde revieves award from Dr. Keith Lamb
Crege La Ronde receives an award from MSU Texas Vice President of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management Keith Lamb.

La Ronde said his “love for innovation” is what motivated him to study engineering. He found many professors who helped him cultivate that desire. “Strangely enough, I enjoyed my honors classes more so than any others. I am generally not very good at taking exams, as I tend to get nervous and distracted, but I am very good at doing research and engaging in discussion,” La Ronde said. “Most if not all of my honors courses focused on discussing ideas and facts, doing research, critical thinking, and analyzing information. Although the work was more challenging and more time-consuming, it became much more interesting. I must say that I learned better and succeeded more in my honors courses than in others. I have to shout out Dr. Jan Brink in engineering for being one of my first and best mentors, Dr. Steve Garrison and Dr. Margaret Brown Marsden, for being so patient with me and for helping me develop in different aspects of my life.”

Travel is something students don’t take for granted in 2021 after the past three semesters, but La Ronde is thankful for his opportunities, especially through Model United Nations. “Model UN, conferences where I got to travel, my senior design project, hosting senate meetings for student government, and research were my favorite moments,” La Ronde said. “My most treasured memory will have to be traveling to conferences. I enjoy seeing new places, and getting to do that for free was very amazing.” 

La Ronde won the Viola Grady Leadership Award with the Redwine Scholars Program this year. “That award recognizes the school’s top student leader for the year. It was a tremendous honor to be recognized,” he said. “I must say that it was very validating and motivating to be recognized.

“My experience at MSU was worth it! I am a different and more mature individual today spiritually, physically, and emotionally because of all the experiences that I have had in this community. I must thank my God, my parents, family, and friends for supporting me throughout the years. I encourage every student to seek out opportunities, build doors and take advantage of the opportunities here.”

Redwine Scholars Honors 2021

Outstanding Special Education Student: Braelyn Ringwald

Outstanding Mass Communication Student: Karrington Bradley

Outstanding Music Student: Lilian Adams

Outstanding English Student: Meredith Berend

Vinson Award in Creative Writing: Meredith Berend

Outstanding Chemistry Student: Amy Arceneaux

Outstanding Mathematics Student: Chad Callender

Outstanding Freshman Man: Andres Revis

Outstanding Freshman Woman: Elizabeth Horn

Outstanding Sophomore Man: Hunter Ordner

Outstanding Sophomore Woman: Brooke Creacy

Outstanding Junior Woman: Abagail Jones

Outstanding Senior Man: DanLee Duncan

Outstanding Senior Woman: Kishelle Licorish

Man of the Year: Andrew Wolf

Woman of the Year: Amanda Threlkeld

Viola Grady Leadership Award: Crege La Ronde

Alumni Association Award: Hunter Ordner

Hardin Scholar: Autumn Fredline

 

Serving his fellow MSU Texas students

Crege La Ronde
Crege La Ronde served as Student Goverment Association Vice President.