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UVI: Graduation Journeys


May 13, 2005 – If you need to know the true meaning of multitasking, ask Velma Freeman, who will earn a bachelor of science degree on Saturday from the University of the Virgin Islands.
She learned to play multiple roles as she pursued her nursing degree. For several years the Emergency Medical Technician worked full-time, attended UVI full-time, and served as a member of the V.I. National Guard, all while being a single mother. "Only with God's help and the support of family and friends," was she able to make it through, she said.
This Saturday her dream will become a reality, but that doesn't mea she'll slow down. Freeman plans to return to work as an EMT with the Department of Health, which granted her administrative leave in January to complete her degree. However, she'll also join the Roy Schneider Hospital staff as a part-time nurse.
Freeman explained that the turn of the century was rough for her. Her son was born in 1999, and her mother died in 2000. But from somewhere she found the strength to pursue her degree full-time. "Don't shortchange yourself," Freeman advises. "When you have a goal, go after it."
Identical twins Kwame and Kameel Allen pursed their goals together, but each ended up doing their own thing. Ironically their goals will be realized together on Sunday at the St. Croix campus commencement ceremony when Kwame earns an Associate of Science degree in computer science, and Kameel earns an associate of arts degree in computer information systems. Kameel, a microsystems analyst for the Water and Power Authority, said the two became interested in computers in fourth grade when their mother purchased a computer.
Both enrolled in the Computer Science program at UVI after completing high school, but Kwame pulled back to part-time when he got a full-time job. Kameel continued full-time at UVI and earned his AS in Computer Science in 2003. He retuned, then, for a second degree. The two will march at the 4:30 p.m. ceremony on the St. Croix campus.
UVI Class of 2005 Top Students
It is always a great accomplishment to be named top of a class. The following students earned the highest Grade Point Averages in the UVI Class of 2005.
St. Croix campus
Jasmine Buttolph is the undergraduate student with the highest GPA on the St. Croix campus. Buttolph is a psychology major. The graduate student with the highest GPA on the St. Croix campus is Tydel John, a master of arts in education major.
St. Thomas campus
Accounting major Catherine Forbes is the undergraduate student with the highest GPA on the St. Thomas campus. Two graduate students on the St. Thomas campus are tied with the highest GPA. They are Onika Hodge-Smith and Rebecca Hoffart, both are master of arts in education majors.


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