USD's 2019 Valedictorians Share Passion for Learning and Careers

Wednesday, May 22, 2019post has photos

One has known she wanted to teach since elementary school. Another will become a mergers and acquisitions analyst and a third is joining a cyber security and technology firm.

2019 USD Valedictorians

All three are amazing students and, for the Class of 2019, they are the University of San Diego valedictorians. 
 
Even as a child, College of Arts and Sciences Valedictorian and Liberal Studies major Kristina Kimsey liked to play school with her younger sister. "Teaching and connecting with students was always what I really wanted to do," she said.
 
Despite her 4.00 grade point average, Kimsey said she was shocked when USD Provost Gail Baker told her she would be the valedictorian who would be given the honor of speaking before her fellow graduates. "I asked her, 'Are you sure?'"
 
As a youngster, School of Business Valedictorian Gregory Gibson thought he wanted to work on Wall Street. His passion only grew as he majored in Finance and Business Economics and even did undergraduate research with Economics Professor Dr. Stephen Conroy. Gibson will join the Software Equity Group in San Diego as a software mergers and acquisitions analyst but he's thinking he might want to stay on the slightly more laid back West Coast or even enter academia. "I want to get some experience under my belt and see where that takes me from there."
 
Shiley-Marcos School of Engineering Valedictorian and Industrial and Systems graduate Maddy Horn also has her first move figured out as she joins G2 Ops, Inc. She loves systems engineering because "It's about improving and coming up with a better and better solution" and integrating data analytics and science into the mix. 
 
All three honorees are grateful for the many activities and opportunities at USD that have prepared them for the next stage. Horn served as president of USD's chapter of the Society of Women Engineers and vice president of its Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers chapter. Gibson was a member of a four-man team that advanced to the finals of the National Investment Banking competition in Vancouver, B.C., Canada. Kimsey worked as a Youth Engagement Initiative Mentor for elementary students through USD's Karen and Tom Mulvaney Center for Community, Awareness and Social Action and will be earning a Master's in Curriculum and Instruction at USD's School of Leadership and Education Sciences in only one year. 
 
"School is something we've all been doing for our first twenty years of our lives so the next chapter's going to be very different for us," Gibson concluded. "But it's a really exciting time that I'm looking forward to and hope my fellow graduates are as well."
 
— Liz Harman

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Liz Harman
eharman@sandiego.edu
619 260-4682

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