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UCO Honors Students for Top Academic Achievement as Fall 2018 Class Marshals

A photo of Old North, the oldest building on Central’s campus

Nov. 30, 2018

Media Contact: Sarah Ward, Communications and Marketing Coordinator, UCO University Communications, 405-974-2106,

UCO Honors Students for Top Academic Achievement as Fall 2018 Class Marshals

The University of Central Oklahoma has named five students as Class Marshals of their respective colleges, recognizing them for academic excellence as a part of Central’s fall 2018 commencement ceremonies Dec. 14-15 at the university’s Hamilton Field House.           

Students earn the title of Class Marshal for achieving the highest academic records within their colleges during their time at Central.           

Cheyenne Autumn Branson, a psychology major from Midwest City, Oklahoma, will represent the College of Education and Professional Studies with a 4.0 GPA. Following graduation, she plans to attend a psychology graduate program, focused on counseling, and hopes to have a fulfilling career in therapy.           

“I have learned so much at UCO and am really proud of all the ways I have grown in my time here. I am mostly passionate about learning, and I have no intention of stopping,” Branson said.

A member of the Psi Chi and Golden Key International honor societies, Branson is a recipient of the Phi Theta Kappa Academic Scholarship and the Psychology Department Tuition Waiver, as well as placement on the President’s Honor Roll.

Sarah J.L. Chambers, an English major from Norman, Oklahoma, will represent the College of Liberal Arts with a 4.0 GPA. Chambers is a member of the Language and English societies, the National Society of Collegiate Scholars and Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society. She also received a Research, Creative and Scholarly Activities (RCSA) Presentation Grant, a Best Paper of Symposium 2018 award and the Broncho Distinction Award.           

“My time at UCO’s College of Liberal Arts has given me the opportunity to challenge myself, develop essential skills and engage with ideas and themes that define humanity,” Chambers said.

“My experience here as helped me to define myself. It would not have been possible without the guidance and support of incredible faculty and staff.”           

Chambers intends to continue her education through graduate school, furthering her love for cultural and literary inquiry and aiming to one day share her enthusiasm with a new generation of students.           

Sydney Conner, a vocal performance major from Houston, Texas, will represent the College of Fine Arts and Design with a 3.89 GPA. A graduate of Kinder High School for the Performing and Visual Arts, Conner is a member of Pi Kappa Lambda, a national music honor society, and Sigma Alpha Iota, an International Music Fraternity.

“UCO has exposed me to a range of educators who have committed themselves not only to the task of fostering their students through the journey of learning but also applying that knowledge to their everyday lives and future careers,” Conner said.

Following graduation, Conner plans to attend graduate school for a degree in arts management and administration, as well as a Doctorate of Musical Arts in Vocal Performance, with an ultimate goal of sharing her love for music through performing, outreach and education.

Julia D. Messner, a math education major from Edmond, Oklahoma and a graduate of Edmond Memorial High School, will represent the College of Mathematics and Science with a 4.0 GPA. After graduation, Messner plans to take a position at Heartland Middle School in Edmond, where she will teach seventh grade math and geometry.

“I have enjoyed my time here, at UCO. The professors have been very helpful and supportive. I feel blessed to have been a student at this school,” Messner said.

Messner is a member of the Kappa Delta Phi, Gamma Beta Phi and Golden Key International honor societies. She received the Josephine Plunkett Math and Margaret-Bennett McAllister Math scholarships, as well as the Outstanding Secondary Education Award and the Distinguished Graduate Volunteer Medal.

Hannah Leanne Mette, a Human Resource Management major and a graduate of Spring Creek High School in Spring Creek, Nevada, will represent the College of Business with a 4.0 GPA.

“There are periods in your life that you reflect on as truly transformational. I know that, for the rest of my life, I will view my time at UCO as one of these periods,” Mette said.

“It shaped my view of what it means to be a leader. It helped me find my passion. Most of all, it brought me friendships that will truly last a lifetime, along with a fiancé.”

Mette is a member of Alpha Xi Delta, Leaders of Tomorrow, 2BeLeader, the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) and is a resident assistant in university housing. She received the Leaders of Tomorrow, Management Student, and Textbook Leadership scholarships and was named Outstanding Senior in Leadership, Panhellenic Chapter Officer of the Year, SHRM Regional Champion and the 2018 UCO Homecoming Queen. Mette’s post-graduation plans include continuing her professional career in training and development in the Oklahoma City metro.

First presented in 1994, the Class Marshal title has become a proud Central tradition. Each of the honorees will wear a bronze graduation gown and a special stole during the fall commencement ceremonies, signifying the highest degree of academic excellence.

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Editor’s Note: Individual headshots of each Class Marshal may be downloaded at