Dillard University’s Class of 2013 graduates on May 11, with three students honored for their exceptional academic performances: valedictorians Lauren Lemonious and Ezinne Eziyi and salutatorian Rachel Williams.
Valedictorian Lauren Lemonious, an urban studies and public policy major from Detroit, will enroll at Harvard Law School in September. A graduate of Cass Technical High School, Lemonious pledged Alpha Kappa Alpha and tutored with Upward Bound during her four years at Dillard. As a member of the Melton Foundation, an international organization that unites students from across the globe, she traveled twice to Germany and once to Chile; she will visit India with the cohort in August. She completed summer internships with the law firm Hughes Hubbard and Reed in New York City. She plans to go into corporate law, entrepreneurship and consulting. Her parents are Shari Lemonious, a social worker, and Garfield Lemonious, an engineer.
Valedictorian Ezinne Eziyi was born and raised in Abia State, Nigeria. She came to the U.S. at age 16 and studied at the University of Iowa and Tallahassee Community College before settling at Dillard, where she majored in economics and minored in accounting for three years. On campus, she served as the vice president for revenue and finance of the Applied Business Laboratory Executive Program; the vice president of the Junior Class Council; and a peer consultant in the Writing Center. She logged 245 community service hours at Dillard. She interned last summer with the Brinker Capital investment firm in Berwyn, Penn., and plans to go into finance and consulting. She is the youngest of six children born to Ugo Iziyi.
Salutatorian Rachel Williams, a psychology major from Baton Rouge, La., has been accepted into an education policy master’s program at the Peabody College of Education and Human Development at Vanderbilt University. A graduate of Baton Rouge Magnet High School, she has served as a UNCF social entrepreneurship fellow, a Teach For America rising leaders fellow, a Southern Education Foundation leadership initiative fellow, and an external affairs intern for the Recovery School District. She received the Sutton Prize as the Class of 2013’s exceptional female student. She plans to develop education policy and work in the non-profit sector. Her father, Willie Williams, is a dentist, and her mother, Andrea Huff, works for the state of Louisiana.