SBS Commencement Speakers

University Commencement Speaker:

Anisa Omar, Political Science

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Anisa is graduating with a Bachelor of Science in political science. She is from Mankato, Minnesota, and is a first-generation college student; something her parents are very proud of. Anisa dedicates much of her time to giving back to the community. She is an active volunteer with the YMCA Big Brother/Big Sister program and other community projects including Mankato Area Youth Project, Ignite the Youth, and Mankato Area Voices for Racial Equity. 

One of Anisa’s most memorable moments as a Maverick was when she was elected student body president by her peers. She found her time serving students as student body president to be a truly rewarding experience. Following graduation, Anisa will be attending law school to become either a family attorney or civil rights attorney. Her message to the graduating class is to “embrace this new journey and realize the power in your perspective.”

View Anisa's Commencement Speech:

In addition to Anisa Omar, the College of Social & Behavioral Sciences is proud to recognize two additonal student speakers.

Katelynn Ogunfolami, Political Science


Katelynn Ogunfolami is a graduating senior from Woodbury, Minnesota. Her major is Political Science (Pre-Law) with a minor in Social Welfare. And she is the President of the Recognized Student Organization African Women of Action. Katelynn has a passion for learning more about intersectionality, racial disparities, and the social and economic effects of society on individuals. She aspires to pursue a career in law as an attorney with future aspirations of serving her community as an elected official.

View Katelynns's Commencement Speech:

Michael Hess, Social Studies Teaching

michael-hess.jpegMichael is from Lakeville, Minnesota and is graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Social Studies Teaching. After spending 22 years in the Army, he chose to pursue his education in social studies education “to be part of the solution for our country, not part of the problem.” He believes that starts with education, especially public schools. His goal is to give his future students the tools and knowledge needed to be informed and productive citizens.

View Michaels's Commencement Speech: