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Photo courtesy of Melanie Carlson

UC names valedictorian and salutatorian

James McClendon, Editor-in-Chief


As the 2016-2017 academic year comes to a close, it is time to honor two Utica College students who have earned the right to sit at the top of their class.

Senior Melanie Carlson was named valedictorian after finishing her college career with a perfect GPA of 4.0.

“I am extremely honored to be named valedictorian,” Carlson said. “I’ve been privileged to have great professors, coworkers and classmates that have continuously supported me throughout my time at UC.”

Carlson Is a Health Studies major in the Occupational Therapy track. She came to Utica College in 2015, after graduating from Mohawk Valley Community College.

Carlson will be continuing her education at Utica College as she pursues a Master of Science degree in Occupational Therapy.

Her parents, David and Barbara Carlson, both graduated from Utica College, so this recognition is very special for her entire family.

“I’m glad that I get to share this experience with them and am looking forward to commencement,” Carlson said.

Just behind Carlson in class standing is the 2017 salutatorian, Mikhail Bushinski, who earned an overall GPA of 3.98.

“Being named Salutatorian for the class of 2017 is an amazing honor,” Bushinski said. “I feel very happy and fortunate to be recognized for my achievements at Utica College.”

Bushinski arrived at Utica College in 2013 and became a dual major in Government and Politics and Economics, with a specialization in pre-law. He was considering returning to Utica College for an MBA, however, he has decided to accept his offer to Yale Law School.

“With great honor, I also accept the responsibility to represent Utica College as I continue my education at Yale University, where I will be attending law school, and wherever the path takes me after that,” Bushinski said.

In addition to earning near perfect grades in the classroom, Bushinski was also a member of the Utica College men’s ice hockey team.

“I cannot thank Utica College enough for the opportunities it has given me,” Bushinski said. “This recognition is just another reason why I am so grateful to UC and all of the people who make it what it is.”