Brookfield native Casey McCall, a senior secondary English education major, was selected to be the student speaker for the spring semester’s graduation ceremony.
The spring commencement ceremony is at 10 a.m. Saturday in the Kachel Fieldhouse.
McCall said she is not nervous about giving her speech, which she says will be inspiring and humorous.
“The whole [speech] is going to be kind of a reality check,” McCall said. “There are a lot of clichés that are getting really old, and so I just want to touch on reality … just tell true stories and find a way to relate to people. This is a fine time to represent a whole group of people. I’m excited because it’s going to be funny.”
McCall is also graduating with a minor in Spanish. Although McCall is graduating, she won’t be leaving UW-Whitewater just yet.
“I’m getting my degree but I’m coming back for grad school,” McCall said. “I’d love to teach at a technical college someday, so getting my master’s degree is the first step.”
McCall is also working for the university while attending graduate school. She will be working in the communication department as a graduate instructional assistant and helping teach basic speech classes.
“It’s an exciting opportunity,” McCall said.
With her college concentrations based around two languages, it’s obvious McCall is extremely interested in communication as a whole.
“I’m more interested in the study of communication than the study of English,” McCall said. “I’d rather teach communication than English, but language overall has a big part in my life. I love Spanish and I really want to find more opportunities to use that to serve.”
Last May, McCall went on a mission trip to Uruguay with Campus Crusade to reach out to college students.
“I spent a month living in South America reaching out to college students,” McCall said. “It was a challenge to do it in a different language but it opened my eyes to the fact that there was so much more outside of my comfort zone. It put life into perspective. To go somewhere thousands of miles away and see a different culture, different people, how they act, how they love, how they talk, it really opened my eyes to something great.
“I would love to go back and maybe help lead another project or another trip there,” McCall said with a smile.
McCall has been involved with Campus Crusade for three years and put on large-group activities and read announcements. She was also a campus assistant for two years.
“I became very good at walking backwards and talking loudly,” McCall said with a laugh. “I mastered those two things.”
McCall is also a paid on-call member of the Lisbon Fire Department. She got the passion for helping people from her father, who is a helicopter pilot for Flight for Life Milwaukee, and her mother, who is an emergency room nurse. She plans to get her firefighter certification this summer.
McCall said she has many people to thank during her undergraduate time at UW-Whitewater, including her mother, Amy Anderson, Professor Marilyn Durham and God.
“God has just opened a lot of doors and I gained the faith in college and that has changed my life for the better,” McCall said.
There is two commencement ceremonies this spring. Bachelor’s degrees will be given to 1,242 students at the 10 a.m. ceremony on Saturday.
According to the registrar’s office, 178 students will graduate from the College of Arts and Communication, 476 from the College of Business and Economics, 211 from the College of Education and Professional Studies, and 377 from the College of Letters and Sciences.
Another ceremony for the 224 students receiving master’s degrees and six students receiving education specialist degrees will be at 3 p.m. Saturday in the Young Auditorium.
In a release, Chancellor Richard Telfer said separate ceremonies are being held to account for the growing number of graduates and to allow a more personal focus.
UW-Whitewater alumnus David Kistenbroker, a 1975 graduate, will also speak at the undergraduate ceremony. Kistenbroker now works as a respected securities litigation attorney at Katten Muchin Rosenman law firm in Chicago.