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Ten UB Mingoe student-athletes graduate in Class of 2022

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — The University of The Bahamas Mingoes will graduate one in all its largest class of student-athletes during this yr’s commencement.

Ten UB Mingoes are expected to receive their degrees on this class from five different sports: Bulinsky Cousin (men’s soccer); Alivia Culmer (women’s volleyball); Donovan Dean (men’s basketball); Shanntanna Etienne (women’s volleyball); Daniel Hall (men’s basketball); Kaneisha Johnson (women’s softball); Romica Josey (women’s track and field/cross country); Christoph McKenzie (men’s basketball); Aaron Munnings (men’s soccer); Davia Wright (women’s track and field/cross country); Donovan Dean (men’s basketball). 

Athletics Director Kimberley Rolle said she is worked up to have such a big class graduate. 

“That is a formidable class of student-athletes who’ve made a huge effect on this system on many alternative levels,” she said.

“All of them had their justifiable share of challenges during their tenure; nevertheless, I’m so pleased they persevered and have arrived at this point of their lives. I share of their excitement of getting so far and might’t wait to see what’s ahead for them.”

Rolle noted that while UB Athletics Department does push their student-athletes within the athletic arena, it is vital for this system to help in the event of the entire person.

“I actually have seen the maturation of all of those student-athletes over the course of time,” Rolle said.

“While we push them hard of their respective sport, we also challenge them concerning the game of life and to now make a difference in our country. I’m confident they’re much better today than they were 4 or five years ago, and that is incredibly gratifying.” 

Bulinsky Cousin

Bulinsky Cousin didn’t have the simplest path to becoming a Mingoe.  He didn’t quite have the qualifications to get into UB. 

Bulinsky Cousin (white shirt)

“He was broken about that,” head coach Dion Godet said. 

That tackle didn’t stop the striker though. He attended one other institution to get his grades up after which transferred to UB. 

Cousin made a right away impact on the pitch and carried that persistence into that classroom. That tenacity was well rewarded because the civil engineering technology major graduated with a 3.20 GPA. 

 “As a member of the Mingoes I used to be all the time pushed to be a tough employee on and off the sector with the support from my teammates, coaches, professors, and the various friends I met on my college journey here at UB,” Cousin said.

“I also learnt to all the time strive to be the perfect and keep pushing as a student-athlete even through tough times.” 

Godet calls Cousin the “picture of persistence” on the pitch.

“He will not be a natural talent but he has a willingness to try to believes in best,” he said.

“I’m pleased to see his development and need him all of the success.”

Alivia Culmer

Alivia Culmer captained the ladies’s volleyball team to among the finest seasons in this system’s history—coming inside just a few wins of constructing it to the playoff within the New Windfall Volleyball Association’s 2019-2020 season. 

Alivia Culmer

The pc information systems major said her best memories of wearing the Mingoes uniform is the relationships on and off the court along with her teammates—despite the COVID-19 pandemic’s impact. 

“The relationships I’ve built through volleyball; those ladies have change into my sisters, they’re relationships that may proceed on outside of UB and out of doors of volleyball,” she said. “My experience at UB, though it was cut short resulting from the pandemic, is one I’ll all the time remember. I actually have built many long-term relationships with athletes and non-athletes.”

She added that she’s learned loads as a Mingoe.

“I actually have learned a number of self-control and more importantly, being on the team has also taught me patience.”

Culmer said she will not be certain if she’s going to keep playing “but who knows what the longer term holds for me”—nevertheless she knows she wants to offer back to the game.

“Volleyball will all the time be my love and first passion and if my assistance is ever needed Coach Raymond Wilson and Coach Sydline Justillien know the way and where to seek out me.”

Shanntanna Etienne 

Shanntanna Etienne leaves an enormous mark at UB not only as a volleyball player but as a founding vice-president of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC).

Shantanna Ettienne

The SAAC is a committee made up of student-athletes assembled to supply insight on the student-athlete experience and is meant to supply input on rules, regulations, and policies impacting student-athletes and their collegiate experience. The SAAC was formed three months before the COVID19 pandemic shut down sports worldwide. 

The bio-chem major said she’s grateful to her coaches for bringing out her talent. 

“My best memory was with the ability to watch my coaches bring me from not knowing concerning the sport to a degree of truly being good in the game,” she said.

“My progress while being at UB is something I’ll all the time treasure.”

She added that she learned loads about herself within the volleyball program. 

“I’ve learned patience, teamwork, and faculty spirit while being a Mingoe,” Etienne said.

“It’s not all the time about winning but it surely’s about encouraging and lifting up your team members and fellow Mingoes when they may not have the opportunity to do it for themselves.”

She may take off the blue Mingoe uniform but blue won’t ever leave her.

“Being a Mingoe and representing my school was my best college experience by far and I’d do it again in a heartbeat. I’ll all the time bleed blue!”

Daniel Hall 

Daniel Hall joined the lads’s basketball team right after the team transitioned from Caribs to Mingoes. 

“I’ll always remember that have,” he said.

Daniel Hall

“There have been a number of new things happening and expansion of things already in place similar to media day and homecoming. I feel being an element of youth of Mingoes athletics will all the time persist with me.”

He added that his second-best experience was his first basket on a world tour for UB “but ultimately it’s trumped by that have of helping to form The Mingoes Culture.”

As a Mingoe he said he learned the importance of exertions. 

“Our coach would often say ‘we’re a team filled with guards’ and so coming in as a guard on a team filled with guards to play guard one would see the challenge in that,” he said.

“This definitely further developed my persistent spirit and it’s now a trait that I think will assist me in my future endeavors.”

The marketing major hopes to at some point either manage international basketball teams or represent players. 

“I’d like to start out with player scouting for just a few years,” he said.

“I think with the intention to have the opportunity to represent athletes I have to first know exactly what teams would search for in them. So, scouting can be a very good experience and learning opportunity for me.”

Kaneisha Johnson

Kaneisha Johnson ends her time as a Mingoe but leaves with the memory of being an element of the primary UB women’s softball team. 

Kaneisha Johnson

Nevertheless, she said it’s the memories of camaraderie that may remain along with her as she graduates. 

“My best memory as an athlete needed to be my very first Mingoes Awards,” she said.

“It was a lot fun showing out with my team and watching how well everyone got along pre-Covid.”

After graduation, the pc information systems major said she hopes to change into a cybersecurity expert.

“I aspire to further my knowledge of data technology first though.”

During her time at UB, the infielder said she truly understood the maxim of trusting the method.  

“It truly is true when people say that comparison is the thief of joy,” she said.

“Specializing in my journey and realizing that there might be no flowers without rain was an enormous a part of me with the ability to push forward and graduate.”

Looking back on her time at UB, she imparted some advice to those coming into the institution.

“To all of the freshman I’d say to soak all of it in, experience every little thing you possibly can, join clubs and don’t be afraid to place yourself on the market,” Johnson said.

“You may’t expect to be boring at a college that has a blue flamingo as a mascot.”

Romica Josey

Track and field head coach Ednal Rolle calls Romica Josey one in all—if not the—most supportive athletes he’s coached in his entire profession—not only at UB. 

“She is special and it is vitally rare to seek out an athlete like her,” he said.

Romica Josey

“I’ve seen her grow throughout the years in Exuma and at C.V. Bethell. She was all the time a positive person on the track and within the classroom. She was one who I knew was all the time going to hit the books as hard as she hit the track.”

Rolle added Josey worked hard on the track in practice and tried to place it together on the track but “sometimes she just couldn’t recover from her mental block but it surely was never because she wasn’t putting in the hassle”.

Josey also helped charter the SAAC at UB because the committee’s founding secretary and was instrumental in making it successful.

“She was an enormous driving force behind the formation of the committee,” founding advisor Christopher Saunders said.

“She believed in ensuring athletes had a voice.”

She was also an enormous fan of her fellow Mingoes at meets. Her best memory was when the team traveled to the University of South Florida this yr and the team was in a position to socialize along with her teammates.

“I had my best time ever at that meet but I also enjoyed the time we spent on the restaurant. We shared jokes and spoke about a few of our life experiences. It was a terrific day without work the track.”

After graduation, the law and criminal justice said she hopes to earn her master’s degree in diplomacy and at some point work at The Ministry of Foreign Affairs. 

She added that being a Mingoe has taught her many things about life and how you can face challenges. 

“What I actually have learned while being a Mingoe is that life is crammed with ups and downs, and disappointments at times,” she said. “What we do during those times determines what the times that follow can be like. I actually have learned to learn from every experience in life and to not allow it to bring me down but to create a greater version of myself.”

Christoph McKenzie

Christoph McKenzie ends his 4 years at UB as captain of the lads’s basketball team. 

Christoph McKenzie

The pc information systems major said he’s had some exciting times within the Mingoes uniform but his favorite was at 2018 homecoming game against The University of the U.S. Virgin Islands. With about two minutes to go within the third quarter and The Mingoes down two points, McKenzie had a putback dunk to tie the sport.

“I still do not forget that dunk,” he said. 

Over his 4 years in this system, McKenzie said he’s met “some amazing people and made new life-long relationships” which can be vital to him.

“Those relationships helped me along my journey and I appreciate everyone dearly,” he said. “Also, I would love to say without God and my family I wouldn’t have been in a position to achieve such an accomplishment. I’d say thanks to educate Bacchus Rolle, coach Lavar Johnson, coach Taige Adderley, Rolle, and the entire athletics department for giving me the chance to play for the team and in addition granting me an education. I’m endlessly grateful.”

McKenzie said he has big plans after graduation. He’s going to explore an expert basketball profession. “After my skilled profession, I’ll change into an IT support specialist.”

Aaron Munnings

Aaron Munnings played for the UB men’s soccer side as goal-keeper but head coach Dion Godet called him “my cross.”

Aaron Munnings

Godet said Munnings was an intelligent and brave young man. “Aaron was all the time the one with solid introspect on how the sport was won or lost,” Godet said.

“I discovered him to be a gentleman of even keel and was all the time respectful.”

So with all of that Godet still calls him his cross. 

“In some faraway land Aaron believes himself to be a striker and sometimes because the goalkeeper flash of the dream would show up in the sport while in goal,” Godet said.

“I do know Aaron will go far in the longer term, it was a pleasure to play a small role in his success story.”

For Munnings, he said he’ll remember his first international tour with the Mingoes in 2019. 

“I used to be incredibly excited but in addition nervous at the identical time because it could be my first time playing internationally,” he said.

“My teammates were very helpful and supportive which helped my confidence to play to the perfect of my abilities.”

The art major now moves on to pursue acting and hopes to enroll in a program after graduation and hopes to hold a few of that tenacity with him. 

“As a Mingoe, I reaffirmed my belief that supporting and inspiring someone could make a difference of their day and their life.”

Davia Wright

Davia Wright will graduate from UB with a level and a record. 

Davia Wright (far right)

The law and criminal justice major set the Mingoes women’s 3000m record at The University of Central Florida Black and Gold meet in March 2022 as she ran a private best 11:03.57.

She said she loved traveling with the team and constructing bonds as each a track and field and cross-country participant. 

“My best memory was traveling with my team and growing closer as we cohabitated on our trips and encouraged one another along the best way,” she said. 

Her next goal is to maneuver forward in her field. “I will even proceed pushing forward on my journey mainly specializing in entrepreneurship with the expansion of my life because it pertains to cryptocurrency, music, businesses, and generating passive and energetic income.”

She said being an element of the Mingoes family helped her to learn to “never take heed to the group” and to forge her own path.

“A number of people frown on me attending UB and discouraged it as well,” she said, “but despite the challenges I faced I enjoyed my time at UB and I won’t ever regret it.”

Donovan Dean

Donovan Dean will graduate with a level in economics and finance and he said he intends to pursue a profession within the investments industry.

Donovan Dean

The basketball forward said that a few of his favorite memories in a Mingoe uniform weren’t within the games however the fellowship with teammates after morning practices. He added that he’ll probably just play basketball recreationally after graduation but takes something very vital with him after his time on the court.

“I learned that it takes to sacrifice for the team to grow,” he said.

The UB Commencement Ceremony is anticipated to be held on Thursday, May 26, 2022, at 5pm at The Atlantis Convention Center with greater than 600 listed graduates. 

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