ACT Commencement Ceremony 2023
On June 21st, ACT bade farewell and congratulated the graduating Class of 2023. The Commencement Ceremony was held in the outdoor amphitheater of the ACT campus, marking the completion of an arduous academic journey that resulted in the Class of 2022 earning degrees, academic awards, and recognition for their exceptional contributions to extracurricular pursuits.
Dr. Stamos Karamouzis, ACT Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, underlined the institution's mission and its contribution to society by instilling in students democratic and civic awareness, a sense of individual and social responsibility, a spirit of esteem for others, social institutions, and the environment. Dr. Karamouzis thanked parents, family members, and faculty for the achievement of the graduating class.
This year's keynote speaker was Haig Basmadjian, Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer of Nestlé USA, a subsidiary of Nestle, and ACT Class of '01 alumnus. After graduating from ACT with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, Haig was actively engaged in his family business, an exclusive supplier of high-quality materials to the shoe industry.
Currently, his responsibilities span managing a $15 billion portfolio of more than 30 brands in the US market, leading the long-term strategic planning process, unlocking growth opportunities through capital investments and acquisitions, and driving critical transformational and change-management initiatives. In his 20-year career, Mr. Basmadjian has worked in various commercial roles in Greece, France, Switzerland, and the US (Los Angeles, Cleveland, and Washington DC). The speaker was introduced to the audience by Dr. Stamos Karamouzis.
During his inspiring and encouraging speech, Mr. Haig Basmadjian expressed his honor and gratitude for returning to the campus after 20 years. He asked graduates to "take a moment and reflect upon the countless hours of hard work, dedication, and sacrifices that have brought you to this very day." He clearly states that "the path of achievement is not easy, as it requires resilience and perseverance." He congratulated graduates as they have accomplished "something truly remarkable." His advice to the graduates was to view failure as not the opposite of success but an essential ingredient for it.
The ceremony proceeded with the awards and distinctions. This year's Teaching Excellence Award recipient was Dr. Andreas Anestis, Associate Professor of Biological Sciences in the Division of Science and Technology, recognizing his significant contribution to the development and launch of ACT's new Biological Sciences degree.
Dr. Sevasti Kessapidou, Professor & Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Dr. Andreas Anestis, Evripidis Constantinidis, President of the ACT Alumni Association
The valedictorian for the Undergraduate Class of 2023 was Katsonis Georgios-Panagiotis, while the valedictorian for the graduate MBA class 2023 was Paneris Dimitra.
Manolis Maou, Associate Professor & Chair of the Science & Technology Division, Katsonis Georgios-Panagiotis
Ekaterina (Katya) Vasileva graduated with a 3.90 GPA and received the William McGrew Award for Excellence in International Relations.
Dr. Maria Kyriakidou, Professor & Chair of the Division of Humanities and Social Sciences, Ekaterina (Katya) Vasileva, Dr. Roxanne Giampapa, Head of Pinewood - The American International School of Thessaloniki
The recipient of the Alki Kyriakidou-Nestoros Memorial Prize for Excellence in Liberal Arts for 2023 was Eleni (Elli) Tsachtani, who earned a 3.97 GPA, the highest grade point average within the Division of Humanities and Social Sciences.
Dr. Aimiliza Stefanidou | Coordinator of Psychology, Eleni (Elli) Tsachtani, Dr. Panos Vlachos, Anatolia College President.
This year, the Stavros Niarchos Award for Excellence in Computing was presented to Kiakos Ioannis, a highly active student who has served as a Lead of the newly established ACT - Google Developers Student Club.
Manolis Maou, Associate Professor & Chair of the Science & Technology Division, Ioannis Kiakos, Dr. Panos Vlachos, Anatolia College President.
The recipient of the 2023 Athletic Award was Flokas Antonios.
Stepan Partemian, Athletic and Student Activities Coordinator, Antonios Flokas, Haig Basmadjian.