Twenty-seven graduates received their Doctor of Chiropractic (D.C.) degrees at Palmer College of Chiropractic’s West Campus Fall Quarter 2013 commencement on Dec. 6 in the theater of the Santa Clara Convention Center. Nichelle Francavilla Gurule (Littleton, Colo.) and Devon Richard Penner (Sierra Vista, Ariz.) graduated as class valedictorian and salutatorian, respectively, with Summa Cum Laude (3.90-4.0) and Magna Cum Laude (3.70-3.89) honors. In addition to Penner, Justine Scheuher (Clinton Township, Mich.) also graduated Magna Cum Laude.
Members of the 127th graduating class of Palmer’s West Campus who graduated with Cum Laude (3.5-3.69) academic honors included Matthew Basilio (Danville, Calif.), Amanda Dluzniewski (Allen Park, Mich.), Jamie He (Guangzhou, Canton, China), and Gerald Marcinak (Pittsburgh, Penn.). All of the Fall Quarter ’13 class members who graduated with academic honors were also recognized for their selection as members to Palmer’s West Campus chapter of the Pi Tau Delta International Chiropractic Honor Society, the oldest and most distinguished honor society in the chiropractic profession.
In addition to the U.S., the Fall ’13 class was also represented by graduates from Canada, China, and Hong Kong.
Gurule also received a Presidential Scholar Award, which is presented to members of the graduating class who have displayed the highest level of academic achievement, by making the Deans List (with a GPA of 3.5 or above) in each of the 13 quarters they attended Palmer’s West Campus.
For the first time, there was a tie in the selection of the Clinical Excellence Award. Drew McClure (Bayfield, Colo.) and Vasiliki Tsakiri (Menlo Park, Calif.) were co-honorees.The Clinical Excellence award is presented to the graduate which recognizes the graduate who has uniquely distinguished him- or herself during the internship portion of their educational experience.
In addition to graduating with academic honors, Jamie He also received the Student Fellow Award. Selected by members of the graduating class, the Student Fellow Award is presented “in recognition of service and leadership while upholding the values of her class, college and profession.”
Deborah Marin (Grove City, Penn.) received the Virgil V. Strang Philosophy Award, which is selected by a faculty panel, and recognizes a deserving graduate for his or her “distinctive accomplishment and contributions to the philosophical principles of chiropractic as a student at Palmer College’s West Campus.”
Olivia Chu (Sacramento, Calif.), Jason Kim (Issaquah, Wash.), along with Amanda Dluzniewski, Nichelle Gurule and Justine Scheuher received special awards for their service as executive officers of the West Campus Associated Student Government.
Dluzniewski, Gurule, and Kim received special recognition for serving as members of the West Campus Guides, a volunteer group of students who conduct campus tours for prospective students and assist at major College events.
Vanessa Nordin (Rohnert Park, Calif.), along with Chu, Dluzniewski, and Gurule earned awards for their service as officers of the West Campus Sports Council.
Dr. Daniel J. McClure, D.C., CCSP, CCEP, presented the commencement address, “Believe In Yourself.” A 1982 Palmer Davenport graduate, Dr. McClure has maintained a practice in Littleton, Colo., for the past 30 years. Dr. McClure has been active in the field of sports-chiropractic during his three decades in practice, during which he served as team chiropractor for the Denver Broncos as well as the official chiropractor for the U.S. National Diving Team. Dr. McClure was selected by U.S. Diving to serve as their official team chiropractor at the ’92 Summer Olympics in Barcelona, Spain, and, again, at the ’96 Summer Games in Atlanta, Georgia.