More Than 700 Islanders to Earn Degrees During TAMU-CC Summer Commencement, Setting a New Record High

More Than 700 Islanders to Earn Degrees During TAMU-CC Summer Commencement, Setting a New Record High

More Than 700 Islanders to Earn Degrees During TAMU-CC Summer Commencement, Setting a New Record High

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi will hold its Summer 2022 Commencement Ceremony on Saturday, August 6, at 10 a.m. at the American Bank Center in downtown Corpus Christi. The ceremony will celebrate a record-breaking 718 graduates (count as of 7/25/22) from all five of TAMU-CC’s academic colleges.

“Islanders who will walk across the stage this summer have demonstrated personal courage, perseverance, and a will to succeed. These traits will continue to serve them as they show the world what it means to be an Islander,” said Dr. Kelly M. Miller, TAMU-CC President and CEO. “I am honored to be the first person to shake their hands and welcome them to the Islander alumni family.”

Joseph (Jay) Wise Jr., Senior Resident Director of Corpus Christi and Senior Vice President of Investments at Merrill Lynch, has been chosen as this semester’s commencement speaker for his leadership, never-give-up attitude, and incredibly giving spirit.

“I am humbled and excited to have been asked to speak at this summer’s commencement ceremony,” Wise said. “I hope to give these Islander graduates some meaningful advice, inspiring them to never quit and remain flexible and adaptable. There will be hardships in life, and we all must remember to stay in the game, win, lose or draw.”

As a young man, Wise, originally from Houston, found structure and discipline in the United States Marine Corps. After serving in the Marines, Wise returned to the Coastal Bend and attended Del Mar College before continuing his education at the University of Houston. Wise returned to Corpus Christi and began a career with Merrill Lynch, where he currently serves as Senior Vice President of Investments and was named a Forbes top 50 wealth advisor in Texas.

Jay Wise HeadshotDuring his nearly 38 years in Corpus Christi, Wise and his wife Conni have become known for their philanthropic nature, frequently and generously giving to various organizations dedicated to the betterment of the people who live here. Their generosity led to The Association of Fundraising Professionals announcing the Wise’s as 2021’s Outstanding Philanthropists of the Year. Jay and Conni are also staunch supporters of the Island University, sponsoring several Islander Athletic events such as the Conni and Jay Wise Beach Volleyball Islander Classic and Islander Athletics Casino Night. In addition, the couple is proud donors to the Islander Athletic Fund and recently launched the Conni and Jay Wise Islanders L.E.A.D. Program, which aims to help student-athletes develop the skills to become effective leaders, facilitate success, and accomplish their life goals.

“It is so important to Conni and me that we give back,” Wise said. “There is no greater gift than the gift of giving, whether that is giving your time, talent, or treasure.”

The summer ceremony includes five Outstanding Islander Graduates selected for their individual achievements. They include:

  • David Chessher III – College of Science and Engineering
  • Brandon Crowson – College of Business
  • Kirbi Guthman – College of Nursing and Health Sciences
  • Alexa Mortl – College of Liberal Arts
  • Melanie Moseley – College of Education and Human Development

“Commencement is a recognition and celebration of the ultimate academic achievement,” said Dr. Clarenda Phillips, TAMU-CC Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs. “With degrees in hand, our students will use the knowledge and skills learned here at the Island University to shape the world around them. I couldn’t be more proud of our students and their accomplishments.”

Commencement is a free, non-ticketed event that is open to the public. Doors open at 9 a.m., and guest seating is available on a first-come, first-serve basis.

For those who are unable to attend, commencement will be live-streamed at For more information, visit