Each year, in what has become a tradition as part of Spring and Fall commencement, the University Communication and Marketing team highlights Lobos who have inspired us through their exceptional leadership, courage, and perseverance during their time at UNM.

It is exciting for the entire campus community to watch graduating Lobos walk across the stage to receive their diplomas, which for many culminates their education at UNM. These inspirational graduates come from all walks of life – they are from different colleges, programs and extracurriculars comprising the fabric of the University. Your time here has truly helped make UNM a place where each of us defines all of us.

Although it is impossible to showcase every student, we hope these stories provide a snapshot of the Class of 2024's diversity, innovation, and personality.

Congratulations Lobos; you've earned this day!


2024 Inspirational Graduate  Ashley McMains

Ashley McMains | Bachelor of Nursing
Ashley McMains is not only a nursing student; she's also a testament to resilience, compassion, and the power of determination. Graduating from The University of New Mexico College of Nursing with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), McMains' journey has been marked by challenges and triumphs alike, shaping her into an exceptional individual ready to make a profound impact in the health care field.  Read more...


Naadiyahtu Iddrisu | Master of Arts
Naadiyahtu Iddrisu hails from a small village in Ghana. A mother of young daughters, one of them born on her first year as a graduate student, she has consistently supported her family while excelling as a graduate student at The University of New Mexico. Iddrisu is graduating from UNM with her Master’s degree in Communication with a focus on health communication. Her research interest lies at the intersection of health communication, emerging health technologies, intersectionality and social justice.  Read more...


Inspiring graduate Liz Courts 2024

Liz Courts | Bachelor of Fine Arts

Like many other people, Liz Courts’s world changed in 2020 with the onslaught of COVID. Courts had a long-time career but when her freelance work bottomed out, so she turned her sights on The University of New Mexico.

This month, at the age of 41, Courts will graduate with a Bachelor of Fine Arts, Art Studio degree with a minor in Arts Leadership and Business.  Read more...  


Trinity Moody | Bachelor of Arts

Trinity Moody didn’t grow up watching television, but they do plan to make a career out of writing for TV shows. They recognize the irony.

Moody will graduate this month with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Film and Digital Media with a focus in Screenwriting with plans to illuminate Hollywood’s misrepresentation of nontraditional storylines through satirical film and TV projects.  Read more...


Martin Vasquez | Doctor of Philosophy
You wouldn’t believe that after spending an afternoon with Martin Vasquez, he wasn’t heading for ‘So You Think You Can Dance?’ or Major League Baseball. Still, that energy and entertainment are what he carries into his actual career–teaching 

This Inspiring Graduate is adding his doctorate to his list of accolades. This degree, his Doctor of Philosophy, is in UNM’s Physical Education Teacher Education (PETE) program.  Read more...


Monica Etsitty-Dorame | Doctor of Philosophy
T'áá hó'ájitéégóó, t'éiyá- there isn’t any other term that perfectly encapsulates the tenacity, humility and sheer awesomeness that is Inspiring Graduate Monica Etsitty-Dorame. 

The College of University Libraries & Learning Sciences (CULLS) Library Operations Manager is getting her Doctorate in Philosophy in Organization, Information, and Learning Sciences (OILS.) She is so accomplished, University Communication and Marketing (UCAM) has been ready to tell her story for three semesters now.  Read more...


Ashlyn Black, Doctor of Medicine

Ashlyn Black | Doctor of Medicine

In a crowded room at The University of New Mexico, medical students and their families gathered in anticipation for a momentous occasion that would lay the foundation for their futures in health care. It was Match Day; the day Doctor of Medicine (MD) students find out where they will spend the next few years doing their residency training. For Native American student, Ashlynn Black, Match Day was not just important for her future, but also for the future of her community.  Read more...


Heather Cabos - HSC

Heather Cabos | Doctor of Pharmacy

Heather Cabos is just days away from becoming Heather Cabos, PharmD. When she graduates from The University of New Mexico College of Pharmacy this spring, she will officially take on the titles of “doctor” and “pharmacist.” The gravity and significance of that change are not lost on her.

“Pharmacy is extremely important in my eyes,” Cabos said. “I’ve seen numerous times throughout my rotations where patients have been forgotten or slipped through the cracks. Pharmacists have been the ones to find them and bring them back.”  Read more...