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May 3, 2024

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Students Graduating from C of O Students Graduating from C of O

Ceremony marks the 117th annual commencement for the College

POINT LoOKOUT, MO. — College of the Ozarks will host its 117th Commencement Ceremony on Saturday, May 11, 2024, in The Howell W. Keeter Athletic Complex on the College campus. The ceremony will honor 327 graduating students: 61 Bachelor of Arts, 249 Bachelor of Science, and 17 Bachelor of Science in Nursing. This is a ticketed event for graduates and their families.

The top five majors of the graduating class are psychology, nursing, family studies/social studies: marriage and family, accounting, and business administration.  

Chris Boyett, retired PepsiCo executive, will speak at commencement at 10 a.m. in The Howell W. Keeter Athletic Complex.

Chris Boyett is a 1986 graduate of College of the Ozarks and spent over three decades in the CPG industry, retiring from PepsiCo and the corporate world in May 2022.  Chris spent 24 years with PepsiCo in a variety of executive roles, including leading PepsiCo’s DSD Beverage business at Walmart for nine years and PepsiCo’s total Beverage business at Costco for three years.  Prior to that, Boyett held a variety of marketing and sales leadership roles within PepsiCo.  Chris was awarded the Walmart Team Legacy Award in 2014, the PepsiCo Chairman’s Award in 2015, and the True North Award in 2018.  He is also a former Ring of Honor winner and a Rules of the Road Role model winner. He was widely recognized as a teacher, coach, and developer of talent at PepsiCo and in the Rogers, Arkansas office.  Prior to Pepsi, Boyett spent five years in brand management with Hershey Foods and three years with Kraft and Del Monte.  After graduating from College of the Ozarks, Boyett began his career at Baird, Kurtz, and Dobson in Springfield, Missouri, before leaving and earning his MBA at Texas Christian University’s Neeley School of Business.

Boyett has been active in the local Northwest Arkansas and Southwest Missouri communities since retiring.  He volunteers two half days weekly at Feed the 479 in Springdale, a Cross Church ministry.  He is adjunct teaching a class this Spring in the College of the Ozarks Business Department after having co-taught two Big Questions classes at the College in 2023.

The GOLD Candidates

Every year during commencement, officer candidates are commissioned as part of the ceremony. This year, the following will be commissioned into the U.S. Army:

Officer Candidate Esther Schieffer is a Piano major. She is commissioning as a Second Lieutenant in the Army National Guard and will be branching Signal Corps.