Twenty-Nine UIC Student-Athletes Earn Degrees at Spring Commencement

Jasmine Bailey finished her career as UIC's third-leading scorer and rebounder, and graduated with a degree in Criminal Law & Justice.

Jasmine Bailey finished her career as UIC's third-leading scorer and rebounder, and graduated with a degree in Criminal Law & Justice.

May 22, 2012

CHICAGO - Twenty-nine UIC student-athletes from 11 different sports programs walked away with their degrees earlier this month, as Spring Commencement services were held on various locations across campus.

"One of our department's core values is igniting opportunity for our student-athletes, and nothing gets an individual on the right track to taking full advantage of their opportunities like a college degree," said UIC Athletic Director Jim Schmidt. "We're extremely proud of our latest group of graduates and their contributions to UIC Athletics, and wish them all the best of luck in the next phase of their lives."

The women's swimming & diving team and men's track & field/cross country squad both saw a department-high five student-athletes graduate. Among the women's swimming graduates was Clair Martin, who leaves UIC with three school records, having set the program standard in the 100 back, 200 back and 200 individual medley. Martin was also the department's Colvin Communications Scholar last year, fulfilling an internship in UIC's Athletic Communications Office.

Sam Kehoe was one of the highlighted grads for the men's cross country/track & field team - he captured the individual championship in the 5,000-meter run two weeks ago at the Horizon League Outdoor Track & Field Championships. Distance runner Brian Denk was also a First-Team All-Horizon League honoree during the cross country season.

Both the men's and women's tennis teams boasted three graduates at Spring Commencement, as did the women's track & field team. The women's tennis squad, which captured its 16th-consecutive Horizon League Championship last month in Indianapolis, saw seniors Mariya Kovaleva, Elisa Simonetti and Teona Tsertsvadze walk away with degrees. Kovaleva is the winningest player in UIC's rich history, having captured four-consecutive Horizon League Player of the Year awards. The Flames' senior class never lost a dual match against a conference foe, and advanced to four-straight NCAA Tournaments.

Kellie Schuh, of the women's track & field team, was also one of the department's notable graduates. The Crystal Lake, Ill., native set the Horizon League record in the pole vault at the outdoor conference championships, and also captured the pole vault title at the Horizon League Indoors in 2011.

The men's basketball, softball, men's soccer and men's gymnastics teams all had two student-athletes graduate from their respective programs. Head men's basketball coach Howard Moore saw seniors Matt Bush and Dorian Tyler wrap up their college years with a degree - both served instrumental roles on the Flames' squad in each of the past two seasons.

Softball's graduates included Ashley Hewett and Kelsey Sturgeon. Hewett was one of UIC's two primary starting pitchers during her career, while Sturgeon was an instrumental infielder and pinch hitter and runner - both served key roles in helping the Flames capture the 2011 Horizon League Tournament Championship.

Paul Tracy and Drew Wolfe served as co-captains of the UIC men's soccer team last season, and walked away with degrees at Spring Commencement - Tracy chalked up All-Horizon League Second-Team honors last fall. The men's gymnastics grads included Andrew Arnold and Aaron Eyster; two important performers that helped UIC collect three ECAC Championships in the past four years.

Jasmine Bailey, the women's basketball program's third all-time leading scorer and rebounder, also graduated from UIC, as did classmate Cree Nix.

Below is a complete list of UIC's graduating seniors at the conclusion of the 2012 Spring Semester. Stay tuned to in the coming weeks for a list of summer graduates.

Matt Bush, Men's Basketball (Management)
Dorian Tyler, Men's Basketball (History)
Brian Denk, Men's Cross Country/Track & Field (History)
Sam Kehoe, Men's Cross Country/Track & Field (Communications)
Roger Pinon, Men's Cross Country/Track & Field (Elementary Education)
Andrew Arnold, Men's Gymnastics (Exercise & Fitness)
Aaron Eyster, Men's Gymnastics (Psychology)
Paul Tracy, Men's Soccer (Marketing)
Drew Wolfe, Men's Soccer (Political Science)
Nate Kirk, Men's Tennis (Finance)
Francisco Pereira, Men's Tennis (Finance)
Scott Shepardson, Men's Tennis (Finance)
Nate Kamm, Men's Track & Field (Electrical Engineering)
Josh Stanner, Men's Track & Field (Finance)
Jasmine Bailey, Women's Basketball (Criminal Law & Justice)
Cree Nix, Women's Basketball (Sociology)
Kellie Schuh, Women's Track & Field (Biology)
Constance Sciacero, Women's Track & Field (Exercise & Fitness)
Stephanie Laidlaw, Women's Track & Field (Exercise & Fitness)
Ashley Hewett, Softball (Psychology)
Kelsey Sturgeon, Softball (Communications)
Lillian Cabel, Women's Swimming & Diving (Nursing)
Alex Farrar, Women's Swimming & Diving (Marketing)
Jamie Krause, Women's Swimming & Diving (Elementary Education)
Clair Martin, Women's Swimming & Diving (Communications)
Sarah Harper, Women's Swimming & Diving (English)
Mariya Kovaleva, Women's Tennis (Finance)
Elisa Simonetti, Women's Tennis (Finance)
Teona Tsertsvadze, Women's Tennis (Finance)