May 2023 - Wayne State University
Student-focused news for family and friends May 2023
May 2023 graduates are dream chasers, Warriors who will continue to make an impact

May 2023 graduates are dream chasers, Warriors who will continue to make an impact

Public health professionals, artists, prestigious fellowship recipients and policy-changers make up the nearly 3,400 Warriors who were celebrated at Wayne State University’s May 2023 commencement ceremonies. Cancer survivors, student-workers, parents, first-generation students — Wayne State graduates are everywhere, from across the world, all with their own unique challenges and stories. The delicate dance between academics, work and a social life is practiced on what often feels like a tightrope walk to an academic degree. The graduating Class of 2023 saw their years of hard work, dedication and learning come to an end at commencement in early May. It marked the triumphant end to their studies, but also the beginning of the next exciting chapter for this group of Warriors.

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Biomedical engineering student earns NASA fellowship  

Sophomore Justin Nelson admits that when he told his parents he was going to attend Wayne State University, they weren’t super enthusiastic. Nelson is from Muskegon and Detroit was a long way from home. Fast forward a few years, and Nelson’s parents are amazed by opportunities he’s had at Wayne State and were blown away when he recently informed them that he was awarded one of NASA’s Michigan Space Grant Consortium’s Faculty Led Fellowships for Undergraduates.

WSU honors student James Wairagu recounts his joyous journey from Kenya to campus  

As successful college students go, there are those brilliant learners for whom every big break seems to come easily. And then there’s Wayne State University senior James Wairagu, an academic superstar who’s made a habit of actively chasing down opportunity wherever he might find it. The son of Kenyan immigrants, Wairagu has enjoyed a journey that has led him from Africa to New York to Georgia to, finally, Wayne State. Along the way, he’s chased dreams that have taken him from 20,000 feet above Earth right down into the heart of Detroit, from taking college AP courses during high school to the being on the verge of joining the M.B.A. program at the Mike Ilitch School of Business — and, if all goes according to plan, those dreams will eventually lead him to Wayne State’s School of Medicine. And lest anyone forget, Wairagu, who’s set to graduate in May with his bachelor’s in neuroscience, is only 20 years old.

Grad student's study on 'Super Mario Bros.' game score levels up at Graduate Symposium  

Super Mario Bros. is one of the most popular video game franchises of all time. It revolutionized the gaming world in the 1980s and the most recent movie adaptation — which released on April 5 — was a box office hit. The world of Mario makes people feel a variety of emotions, but Wayne State graduate student Andrew Montano wanted to specifically study the impact of its music. Using music from the 1985 version of Super Mario Bros. for the Nintendo Entertainment System, Montano created his presentation, “Super Mario Bros.: A musical and psychological analysis,” which recently won first place at the Wayne State Graduate Research Symposium.

Aaron Keathley is Wayne State's first winner of the distinguished Marshall Scholarship  

As Kevin Deegan-Krause approached the podium to introduce a very special guest at the April 28 meeting of the Wayne State University Board of Governors, an impressive graphic with a few dozen logos popped up on two large screens high above the ballroom floor inside the Student Center Building. The colorful visual featured some of the nation’s elite academic institutions — Princeton University, Johns Hopkins University, Stanford University, Brown University, Wayne State University. Yes, Wayne State. That’s because Wayne State is proudly celebrating its first-ever recipient of the Marshall Scholarship: Aaron Keathley.

Street Kicks organization provides shoes for hospital patients in need  

After a rotation shift at Henry Ford Hospital, Wayne State University medical students Susan Wager and Nina Bourdeau watched a patient who was experiencing homelessness walk out of the hospital with only yellow hospital socks to cover his feet. Deeply concerned about the man and others like him, Wager and Bourdeau were determined to find a way for all patients to be discharged from the hospital with adequate footwear. They founded Street Kicks, a School of Medicine student organization that provides free shoes and socks to patients in need who are discharged from Henry Ford Hospital.

Fall 2023 semester priority registration

Fall 2023 semester priority registration

WWJ Newsradio to highlight Warriors in the Community

WWJ Newsradio to highlight Warriors in the Community

Wayne State gains national Tree Campus status

Wayne State gains national Tree Campus status

Upcoming events


May 16: Fulbright U.S. Student Program: Western Hemisphere


May 17: WSU/Wayne County on-campus career fair


May 18: Malcolm X at 98: Honoring his life and the impact of his life on others


May 29: Memorial Day, university is closed


June 2: Degree applications due


June 8: Spring 2023 semester last day to request course withdrawal


Student resources and reminders

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In the news

WXYZ: How Wayne State grad and St. Clair Shores native helped create new RSV vaccine

Bridge Detroit: Former Detroit Mayor Coleman Young inspires Wayne State University course

CBS Detroit: WHO declares COVID-19 global emergency over: What does that mean for metro Detroit?

Fox 2: Mass shootings prompt Wayne State researchers to study damage from assault rifle vs. handgun

WDET wins 2022 Station of the Year, 8 more honors at MAB Awards

WDIV: The party is getting started for this Detroit entrepreneur who won $100K

WXYZ: Driving simulator at Wayne State University measures danger levels of texting while driving

MLive: These Michigan universities have the best business schools, U.S. News ranking says

DBusiness: Ascension Providence Hospital, Wayne State to collaborate on cancer research

LegalNews: Social work and law students create interdisciplinary organization for holistic defense

BVM Sports: Men’s golf finishes as runner-up in GLIAC Medal Match Play Championship

WDET: Wayne State University program aims to help legislatures conduct oversight

WDIV: Wayne State University hosts concrete canoe races for engineering students across state

Yousra Zouani, Commencement Speaker — College of Engineering

Yousra Zouani, Commencement Speaker — College of Engineering

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Detroit, MI 48202

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