Saint Joseph’s College to Send Off 119th Class of Graduates

April 15, 2014

On Saturday, May 10, Saint Joseph’s College will graduate its 119th class of seniors. The Commencement ceremony will begin at 1:00 pm CDT in the Richard F. Scharf Alumni Fieldhouse, and Cassian Cheung ‘76 will serve as the Commencement speaker. 

Cheung graduated Summa Cum Laude from SJC in three years with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. His senior class president and valedictorian, Cheung was a member of the SJC soccer team and managed the Halleck Student Center cafeteria’s student workers. He went on to study at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, where he earned a Master of Business Administration with a focus in Marketing. 

Cheung started his career on the international marketing staff for Swiss food company Nestlé and was first assigned to their office in White Plains, NY. He soon joined the international team and was relocated to Singapore, Hong Kong, and eventually to Nestlé’s world headquarters in Switzerland. He became the first general manager and chief operating officer for Nestlé China in the late 1980s.

After 16 years with Nestlé, Cheung joined the Quaker Oats Company as the head of Quaker Oats Asia. After the acquisition of Quaker Oats by PepsiCo, Cheung was recruited to be the president of Walmart China. He led the development and expansion of Walmart stores in China in the early to mid-2000s, building a team of more than 20,000 associates.

Today, Cheung is an executive director and the group chief executive officer of Next Media Limited, Hong Kong’s largest publicly listed Chinese-language print media company. He is also an independent non-executive director of Trinity Limited, a Li & Fung company specializing in high end men’s fashion that owns several renowned British and French labels. He is a member of the Kellogg Alumni Council of Asia and an adjunct professor at The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology Business School.

This year’s valedictorian is Political Science and Philosophy major Colby Alexis. Colby, a native of Port Huron, Mich., has spent seven straight semesters on the Dean’s List. In addition to his academic accomplishments, Colby has been a leader in numerous extracurricular activities, including vice president of the Student Association, president emeritus of the SJC chapter of the Alpha Lambda Delta honor society, and secretary of the Puma Activities Council.

Colby is a member of the SJC Marching Band, Jazz Band, and Wind Ensemble as a saxophone player, and he participates in many Campus Ministry and German Club events. In addition, he represents the College as an Admissions Ambassador and a resident assistant. He received the J. Phillip Posey Award for International Studies, the Stemler Study Abroad Award, and the Presidential Scholarship, SJC’s most prestigious scholarship.

“As a competent professional formed through education in the Core Program and my major, it is my responsibility as an SJC alumnus to approach every professional challenge with responsibility and hard work.”

Colby has been awarded a full ride scholarship to Northwestern University School of Law and will begin courses next fall.

Senior Class President Audra Rains will also speak at the ceremony. A Criminal Justice Major, Rains is a four-year member of the softball team and a head resident assistant. A Fortville, Ind. native, Rains was a member of the 2012 SJC softball team that competed in the Division II College World Series. Her junior year, she was named to the Criminal Justice Honor Society, an honor she attributes to the attentiveness of her professors. She has also served as the softball team captain and was voted the 2013 Homecoming Queen. These opportunities have made Rains “want to strive to be the best person I can possibly be and to reach my full potential.”

“This institution has given me the essential tools needed to excel on a professional and personal level. With the leadership skills I have learned at SJC, I can be a successful career woman and a well-rounded person. SJC has given me a foundation that I will be able to use to build a life of achievement.”

For more information on this year’s Commencement ceremony, visit http://www.saintjoe.edu/commencement-2014.

Saint Joseph's College, named a "character-building college" by the Templeton Foundation and a "best Midwestern college" by the Princeton Review, is a four-year, Catholic college offering 27 majors, 4 group majors, 34 minors, and 9 pre-professional programs, complemented by the nationally acclaimed Core Program. Founded and sponsored by the Missionaries of the Precious Blood, SJC is located in Rensselaer, Indiana, approximately 90 minutes from both Chicago and Indianapolis, on a park-like campus of 180 acres and has an enrollment of 1,100 students.

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