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Family and friends celebrated the Class of 2023 at the School of Engineering Convocation, along with representatives of the Rutgers Board of Governors, Board of Trustees, School of Engineering Industry Advisory Board, Rutgers-New Brunswick Chancellor-Provost Francine Conway, and school deans, department chairs, and faculty. The May 12 event featured an address by alumna Ukachi Anonyuo, vice president for global packaging innovation strategy and portfolio management at The Estée Lauder Companies.

“Today we are celebrating all that you accomplished as Rutgers Engineering students,” said School of Engineering dean Alberto Cuitiño in his welcome remarks. “You acquired a solid technical foundation, advanced innovative research, landed and excelled in internships with some of the nation’s leading companies, and you discovered a passion for a particular field of engineering."

He also noted that uniqueness of the Class of 2023, whose studies were disrupted by the Covid-19 pandemic. “You faced these challenges with maturity and collegiality. Most importantly, you forged ahead as engineers – and as the problem solvers you were trained to be.”

Rutgers University-New Brunswick chancellor provost Francine Conway congratulated the students and predicted that, “As engineers, you are the ones who will build the future.”

Muskan Jawed, this year’s Engineering Governing Council president, and senior engineering ambassador Gabriella Rozorsky, were the Class of 2023 convocation student speakers.

Celebrating a Milestone Moment – and Remembering Her Own

While Anonyuo has made a name for herself in the beauty industry, as Cuitiño noted, she has also given back to the school and university through service on the School of Engineering Packaging Advisory Board and Rutgers Africa American Alliance Association, where she has helped raise scholarship funds for underrepresented engineering students.

She reflected on her transformative engineering education, insisting that “the person you see before you today, is an outcome of having a vision, embracing opportunity, and advancing possibility.” She urged the Class of 2023 to do the same.

“Education is beyond being book smart,” she reminded them. “It includes having key critical skills – and confidently knowing your authentic self, especially as a leader.”

Equally important to Anonyuo is setting a vision for the road that lies ahead. “Reflect on what you desire, become what you respect, and mirror what you admire. Stay the course, believe in what you are doing – and above all else, aim high, stay focused, be kind, and have fun.”

A Lifelong Connection

Rutgers Engineering Alumni (REA) is a lifelong network of connection between graduates and the School of Engineering. REA president Matt Lunemann welcomed the Class of 2023 before recognizing Aryanna Arcilla, Elizabeth Hinks, Parinita Jain, Dylan Poku, Mona Ranadive, Belinda Wong, and Muskan Jawed recipients of REA’s Outstanding Student Scholar Awards.

The celebratory convocation concluded with the Bachelor of Science degree being conferred to each member of the Class of 2023 – and congratulations for their achievement and well wishes for their future.