Meet the graduates

Graduate: Terri Williams

Home: Ferguson

Degree: Master’s in American culture studies from University College in Arts & Sciences

Terri Williams, 32, is an community activist, business owner and mother who returned to college to improve her skills a communicator and filmmaker.

Terri and her husband, Chris, own Total Image Barber and Beauty in University City, where her young clients gather to watch the news, watch a film or debate issues like the ones Williams studied in class.

Williams also supports children through her work at Unleashing Potential, where she serves as a development manager. Formerly known as Neighborhood Houses, the nonprofit offers early education and after-school programs and enrichment camps. It also runs Magnificent Creations, a social enterprise that provides job skills and fair wages to local teenagers.

She will be at Commencement with her twin daughters and can be reached at or 314-484-7308.

Read more about Williams here.

Graduate: Haley Allen

Home: St. Charles

Degree: Bachelor’s in international studies in Arts & Sciences

As a ROTC cadet in the Gateway Battalion, Allen has traveled to Tanzania for the ROTC Cultural Understanding and Leadership Program (CULP), where she learned Swahili and the culture and politics of East Africa.

After graduation, Allen will learn to fly helicopters at the U.S. Army Aviation Center of Excellence at Fort Rucker, Ala. She hopes to then serve in Africa, though she may be assigned to the Middle East, Asia or here in the United States. Allen will be prepared.

“The world is a big place with so many languages and so much history,” Allen said. “I can’t be an expert in it all, but I have learned the power of rapport and showing that you care.”

You can reach Allen at or 636-699-7101.

Read more about Allen here.

Graduate: Weston McCarron

Home: St. Louis

Degree: Doctorate in medicine from School of Medicine

Just shy of 36 and a father of four, McCarron is not your typical medical student. He was homeschooled and never considered a career in emergency medicine until his brother died by suicide after struggling with depression and addiction to meth and opioids.

After graduation, McCarron will begin residency training in emergency medicine in July at Barnes-Jewish Hospital.

McCarron will be at Commencement with his children and can be reached at or 208-320-1917.

Read more about McCarron here.

Graduate: Natalia Cantu

Home: Rio Grande Valley, Texas

Degree: Master’s of science in biology for science teachers from University College in Arts & Sciences

Cantu is among the four Texas border teachers who will be traveling to Missouri to receive their Master of Science in Biology for Science Teacher degrees. They feel a special urgency to their jobs given the anti-immigrant bias their students face and their proximity to the proposed border wall.

Cantu is a first-generation college student whose parents were born and raised in Mexico and never went to high school. She can be reached at or 956-874-3148.

Read more about the program here.

Graduate: Angela Peacock

Home: St. Louis

Degree: Master’s in social work from the Brown School

At the Brown School, veteran Peacock studied veterans’ issues and, ultimately, wants to help veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder and other mental health disorders. Peacock struggled after her service in Baghdad. It took a long time, but after extensive counseling and horse therapy, she finally felt ready for college.

She earned her undergraduate degree in psychology from Washington University in 2017 and received a large scholarship to continue her education here.

Peacock will be at Commencement and can be reached at or 636-345-0769.

Read more about Peacock here.

For more stories about our graduating students, visit 2019 Class Acts to see a sampling of our undergraduate, graduate and professional students who are committed to diversity, global engagement, innovation and entrepreneurship, human health and sustainability.

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