Ali Goff of Jenkins is the salutatorian University of Pikeville’s Coleman College of Business for 2014.
Goff was among 286 graduates at the associate, baccalaureate and master’s degree levels during UPike commencement exercises on May 17.
Commencement keynote speaker, Gov. Steve Beshear, was also presented with an honorary Doctor of Public Service degree.
In his address to the graduates, Gov. Beshear challenged graduates to make their community, commonwealth and country a better place.
“You have overcome individual challenges and stand here today armed with a degree from one of the leading institutions in Central Appalachia poised to enter a new phase of your life. I urge you to put aside your cell phone apps and step outside of your normal sphere of interaction, your normal sphere of comfort, to fight for progress and to pull together and make the proverbial difference in the life around you,” said Beshear. “I especially urge you to proceed in a manner that builds bridges and not walls, that nurtures collaboration and not resentment. Think positive. Think big. Fundamental change takes a while … but it pays off in the long run so set a big agenda for your life. The opportunity is there and the time is right,” he said.