The most stirring ovation of the 2019 commencement exercise was reserved for the first African-American valedictorian in the institution’s 119-year history. McGowan advanced with an extensive scholarship at the University of Chicago with the intent to attend law school.
His litany of academic acclaim and rewards included a National Merit Corporate Scholarship, a Phi Beta Kappa Scholarship, the Mitchell-Beall-Rosen Memorial Scholarship, and the St. Thomas Rev. Albert R. Gaelens, CSB Goodness, Discipline, and Knowledge Award.
Class of 2007
There are forever bright new stars bursting on the Broadway and Hollywood scenes interpreting iconic roles, only to be never seen or heard from again, seemingly cast in a meteor shower radiating from one point in the night sky yet with a descent as rapid as the rise not quite reaching the heavens. Craig appears positioned for a steady celestial stay after his National Tour debut in 2018 with the legendary The Phantom of the Opera.
Class of 1993
The epic views from a vista resting at nearly 3,000 feet of elevation are no more captivating than peering into the untapped potential of his fellow backpackers, a collection of low-income teenagers, and helping them rise above systemic barriers to ignite dreams as grand as any canyon. In 2012, the dean of science joined forces with The Woods Project, an initiative founded in 2001 by Houston entrepreneur Steve Rosencranz, who saw a need for disadvantaged students which could be bridged with outdoor education and environmental awareness.
Class of 2018
The 2018 valedictorian accepted an extensive merit-based scholarship to attend Harvard University after considering similar opportunities at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and California Polytechnic State University. He received the St. Thomas Achievement Awards for AP Physics II, Advanced Economics/AP United States Government, AP Computer Science, and Theology/Healing Racism. He also earned semifinalist distinction in the National Merit Scholarship Program joining more than 30 previous St. Thomas scholars since 2010 who reached at least that phase in one of the nation’s most prestigious and long-standing academic competitions.
On the evening of August 25, 2017, Hurricane Harvey made landfall in Texas as a category 4 storm, spawning a flood event on an entirely different scale than what Texas, and the United States, had before seen, soaking parts of the Greater Houston area during a four-day deluge with more than 50 inches of rain. The flood damage – biblical in proportion, frightening to behold. As the effects of Harvey’s unmerciful entry to the Gulf Coast created life threatening havoc and destruction, the Gregorys represented the face of the St. Thomas resolve through the arduous aftermath, theirs the voice from the storm, a flood of emotion.
The Gatlin Brothers
Greg ('98) and Tim ('95)
Brothers choosing decidedly different paths living the principles of Teach Me Goodness, Discipline and Knowledge.Greg transitioned from Eagle Football state champion to daredevil defensive back at Rice University to the world of corporate real estate to a 2010 deep dive into the barbecue business with his parents. In quicksilver fashion, he vaulted into one of the state’s most respected pitmasters. As a United States Army Lieutenant Colonel, Tim was named to the 2016-17 White House Fellows, one of America’s most prestigious programs for leadership and public service. Lt. Colonel Gatlin owns more than two decades of experience in the integration and synchronization of combat arms operations. He has steadily risen through the ranks of command since receiving his Bachelor of Science in Economics from West Point in 1999. His awards include the Bronze Star Medal and the Meritorious Service Medal. Gatlin also received his Masters in Social Organizational Psychology and Leadership from Columbia University in 2010.