2023 2023: Student Commencement Speakers for Class of 2023 announced

2023 2023: Student Commencement Speakers for Class of 2023 announced
Student Commencement Speakers for Class of 2023 announced

Capri McLucas, Marilyn Naeem, Anne Jean, and Natalie Peters to inspire their peers with stories of perseverance and success

2023 Commencement Speaker Headshots
Capri McLucas, Marilyn Naeem, Anne Jean, and Natalie Peters

UMass Dartmouth has announced the student commencement speakers for the Class of 2023 Commencement ceremonies on May 11 and May 12.

Bachelor and Master’s Ceremony I

Capri McLucas


Capri McLucas of Bridgewater, Massachusetts, is graduating with a major in Accounting and a minor in Communication. At UMass Dartmouth, she served as an Ambassador for Admissions and the Charlton College of Business and tutored for the ARC Business Center. Capri was the founding President of the Student Alumni Association, a club that connects students and alumni by providing networking opportunities and traditions to increase Corsair pride. She was a member of the Alumni Engagement Task Force with department heads across campus to align vision and goals with a clear mission statement. Capri also introduced the Chancellor at the Future of the Charlton College of Business event and shared her message and advice with the incoming Class of 2026 at the New Student Convocation. 

Capri is the recipient of many scholarships, including the Diane Souza Desmarais Scholarship, Donald M. & Cornelia E. Yerid Scholarship, Alumni Association Undergraduate Scholarship, and Donald H. Ramsbottom Fundraising Scholarship. She received the Richard Legault Award and was recognized at the 2023 Student Leadership Reception. Having completed an audit internship with O’Connor and Drew and a tax internship at Withum, Capri will next intern at Ernst and Young’s Boston office while taking graduate courses. As a 4+1 student, she plans to earn her MBA with a concentration in Accounting by the end of the fall semester of 2023.

Doctoral Ceremony

Marilyn Naeem

Chemistry and Biochemistry

Marilyn Naeem will be receiving her Ph.D. in Chemistry. Originally from Pakistan, she received two bachelor’s degrees from Kinnaird College for Women, Lahore, and Punjab University, Lahore, and a Master’s Degree from Forman Christian College, Lahore, in Inorganic Chemistry before moving to New York City from Pakistan in 2015. After arriving at UMass Dartmouth in 2018, Marilyn became a highly productive and valued member of Dr. David Manke’s research laboratory. Initially, her research focused on designing novel inorganic ligand sets. Marilyn then shifted her research to synthesizing biologically relevant organic molecules, which led to reporting the first crystal structure of freebase serotonin. 

During her five years at UMass Dartmouth, she represented the graduate students as the Vice President, former Secretary, and a Senator of the College of Arts and Sciences in the Graduate Student Senate. She also served as the graduate representative on the Search Committees for Vice Chancellor and Associate Vice Chancellor of Students Affairs. In addition to being a recipient of multiple awards and serving as a panelist to promote graduate studies, she has also presented scientific talks and posters at national forums, including national meetings of the American Chemical Society (ACS), and was the proud first prize winner of the UMassD Three Minute Thesis Competition in 2022. Currently a member of the Northeastern Section Younger Chemists Committee and ACS Women Chemists Committee, she is passionate about promoting science among under-represented communities throughout her professional career.

Bachelor and Master’s Ceremony II

Anne Jean


Anne Jean is graduating with a bachelor's degree in nursing and a minor in Business Administration. Her family migrated to the United States from Haiti when she was a young child to pursue better opportunities, including education. Anne, a first-generation college student, has been inspired to be a nurse since a young age. As a child, she enjoyed pretending to be a nurse and would practice giving care to her parents and grandparents. Anne began pursuing her UMassD nursing career five years ago by coming through College Now/START and worked closely with her College Now Counselor and Peer Mentor. She was a first-year speaker at the annual College Now Share the Dream celebration and worked in the College Now office supporting other students. She overcame many obstacles during her first year on campus to enter the nursing program. During her UMassD career, she has maintained above a 3.4 GPA and continuously made the dean's list.


Anne enjoys mission trips to help people in need during her free time and hopes to continue her education by becoming a midwife. Anne is inspired to open her own women's birthing center in Haiti to help impoverished women receive the adequate care they need for themselves and their newborn children.

UMass Law Ceremony

Natalie Peters


Natalie M. Peters is from West Barnstable, Massachusetts. At UMass Law she has served as Lead Editor of the UMass Law Review, as Treasurer of the Federalist Society during her first year in law school, and as President during her second and third years. She was awarded a 2022 Civic Action Program fellowship where she engaged with lawmakers and policymakers to learn different approaches to impacting public policy. Born and raised in Southern Illinois, Natalie has a B.S. in Dietetics from Southern Illinois University and before law school, she was a nutritionist for Baltimore City’s WIC program. Her husband, William, is a saint who has encouraged her and believed in her abilities even when she did not. Her husband and children have endured many sacrifices and dinnerless nights so that she could pursue her Juris Doctor. She is eternally thankful for their love and support. After law school, Natalie will clerk for Justice Robinson at the Rhode Island Supreme Court.


Learn more about UMass Dartmouth’s 2023 Commencement Ceremonies.