Congratulations to our Graduating Graduate Students

Jiaxun Chen Arianne Messerman and Michelle Williams

Jiaxun Chen, Arianne Messerman, and Michelle Williams are three of the Arts and Science students who graduated with their doctorates on Friday, Dec. 13, 2019.

Brooke Montgomery

Ninty-two graduate students from the College of Arts and Science celebrated earning advanced degrees during the Graduate School Commencement ceremony on Friday, Dec. 13, 2019. Of those,

  • 37 earned a doctorate
  • 22 earned a master of arts
  • 19 earned a master of public administration
  • 10 earned a master of science
  • two earned a master of music
  • one earned a masters of fine arts.

The following is a brief glimpse into the lives of the graduates and their many accomplishments.

Jiaxun Chen is a graduating doctoral student in the Department of Statistics who has significantly contributed to the Mizzou and Statistics communities through his careful and diligent research. He co-wrote several journal articles, he has served as a graduate research assistant, and he published a paper associated with the applied scientific research he’s conducted. Following graduation, Chen will be joining the research team for the Lilly corporation. His advisors said of him, “It was a pleasure having him as a student at MU, and he will make a great representative for the statistics department and the university.”

Arianne Messerman is graduating with her doctorate from the Division of Biological Sciences, and her work can be summarized as integrative and forward-looking. During her time at the university, Messerman designed experiments based on her intimate understanding of amphibian ecology and conservation, specifically, that of Ambystomatid salamanders during their juvenile stage of life. Her commitment to inclusion, diversity, and equity dramatically changed the atmosphere within the Division of Biological Sciences and at MU more generally.

Michelle Williams is a graduating doctoral student in the Division of Biological Sciences with an emphasis in microbiology. Her doctoral research on the mechanisms of growth in diverse bacterial species has broad applications in numerous fields including agriculture and medicine. At Mizzou, Williams was an outstanding advocate for promotion of science literacy as evidenced by her participation as a Center for Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity Ambassador, Science on Wheels Speaker, and scholarly contributions related to secondary science education.

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