North Carolina Central University to Host 138th Commencement Exercises on Dec. 11

Posted December 06, 2021, 3:56PM

North Carolina Central University (NCCU) will host its 138th Commencement Exercises on Saturday, Dec. 11, in McDougald-McLendon Arena and award degrees to approximately 760 graduates of the university’s juris doctor, master’s, professional and bachelor’s programs. The Baccalaureate ceremony will begin at 9 a.m., and the Graduate and Professional ceremony will commence at 2 p.m.

Safety is the university’s top priority. All guests and participants are required to wear face masks and coverings inside the Arena. Tickets are required for entrance. Guests are encouraged to get the COVID-19 vaccine or tested prior to attending Commencement.

Notable NCCU alumna and University of North Carolina (UNC) Campus Health primary care sports medicine physician Naima Stennett, M.D., ’10, 13, will address the graduates at both ceremonies. 

Stennett, a native of Kingston, Jamaica, and former volleyball standout, was awarded a full scholarship to NCCU at just 16-years-old. She obtained her bachelor's degree in biology with a minor in chemistry before earning her master’s degree at NCCU in biology with a concentration in biomedical research. She was awarded a medical degree from East Carolina University’s Brody School of Medicine in Greenville, N.C., in 2017.

Upon graduating, she received the North Carolina Minority Medical award at the Annual Dr. Andrew Best Banquet. Stennett completed her family medicine residency at the University of Miami at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami, Fla. While in residency, she was awarded the American Medical Society of Sports Medicine Resident scholarship in 2019. Immediately after residency, she completed a one-year fellowship in sports medicine at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC). In addition to her position with UNC Campus Health, she also serves as the team physician for the UNC track and field team.

Stennett is a member of numerous organizations, including the American Academy of Family Physicians, American Medical Society for Sports Medicine, Black Professional Network of Miami, American Medical Association and Student National Medical Association.

Additionally, she is deeply engaged with the Durham community and serves on the board of directors for Bike Durham, a nonprofit organization that encourages individuals to walk, bike and ride transit.

Stennett also mentors pre-med and medical students. She founded a SAT scholarship fund to help pay the SAT fee for high school students outside the United States. She truly believes that her most lasting and fulfilling achievements are earned by helping others fulfill their dreams.

Both ceremonies will stream live on the university’s website, Facebook page and YouTube channel. 

For more information on NCCU’s 138th Commencement Exercises, please visit:

Media Note:  Media will be required to register in advance and complete NCCU’s COVID-19 Visitor Screening Form on the day of the ceremony. Please email and include “Commencement Coverage” in the subject line with the following information: name, media name, contact email and phone number.

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