The Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication Fall 2022 convocation ceremony celebrated the accomplishments of almost 340 graduates while also serving as a homecoming for one of its most supportive and successful alumni.
Christine Devine, an ASU Trustee and Cronkite Alumni Hall of Fame inductee, delivered the keynote address at the ceremony held on Wednesday, Dec. 14 at Desert Financial Arena in Tempe.
Devine is an award-winning television news anchor with Fox 11 Los Angeles, where she has worked for more than 30 years, and an active Cronkite School alumna who generously supports the school and ASU. In 2007, she endowed the Christine Devine Scholarship, which provides scholarship support each year to students in the Cronkite School.
In her convocation speech, Devine reflected on her journey that started as a Cronkite student in the 1980s and took her through a couple of small and medium media markets before landing in Los Angeles in 1990.
Devine, who grew up in Tolleson, in the Phoenix area’s West Valley, began her broadcasting career working as a reporter in San Angelo, Texas. She credited former ASU journalism professor Ben Silver with helping her find the job after he posted her resume on a board at a news directors conference.
“I’d go to McDonald’s and I would order a cheeseburger and water. I had no money,” she said. “But that job would lead me to say we don’t do this for the money. We do it for the passion of wanting to be a part of the ever changing world. To not sit on the sidelines, but to be in the game.”
Devine emphasized that life was about to change for the graduates as they were about to enter their careers but she encouraged them to learn from their mistakes and celebrate their successes.
“So there will be fewer football games, Friday night parties, the camaraderie you all have here. It is all the real world, to which I say — give life a shot,” she said.
She told the graduates to “find your passion, your place to contribute, your place to shine.”
Devine also encouraged students to stay in touch with ASU and the Cronkite School by joining the alumni association, visiting campus and connecting with fellow Sun Devils if they move to a new city.
Her decision to give back to ASU was influenced by a mentor she met when she moved to Los Angeles, who she credits with helping her develop as a young woman and professional at the time.
“You don’t need to touch the masses, but please work to touch just one life, just one person,” she said.
In total, 337 students received degrees, including 80 with a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communication and Media Studies, 53 with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Mass Communication, 61 with a Bachelor of Science in Digital Audiences, 30 Bachelor of Arts in Sports Journalism and one with a Bachelor of Arts in Digital Media Literacy.
The Cronkite School also awarded 111 master’s degrees. That includes 58 with a Master of Science in Digital Audience Strategy, 16 with a Master of Mass Communication, 21 with a Master of Arts in Sports Journalism, 15 with a Master of Arts in Investigative Journalism and one with a Master of Science in Business Journalism. One student received a Ph.D. in Journalism and Mass Communication.
Student speaker Raven Payne referred to her fellow classmates as resilient for having endured a global pandemic during their time at the Cronkite School, which forced them to adjust the way they learned, worked on projects and reported their stories.
Payne implored her classmates to follow their own paths, create their opportunities and don’t settle.
“Times are changing and if they don’t change fast enough, we will change them ourselves,” she said. “We have the pen, paper and will to be the authors of our own stories.”
Outstanding Undergraduate Student
Outstanding Graduate Student
Outstanding Undergraduate Online Student
Outstanding Graduate Online Student
Top Innovator Award
Cronkite Spirit Award
Highest GPA among On-Campus Undergraduates
Highest GPA among Online Undergraduates
Kappa Tau Alpha National Honor Society