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Thousands of Ashford University online graduates and guests from across the country will be at Ashford’s commencement ceremonies on October 5 at the San Diego Convention Center. Only one will perform the national anthem.
Giavonia Fields, a member of the U.S. Air Force earning a bachelor’s degree in psychology, is the winner of a nationwide Ashford University competition to open the graduation ceremonies with her rendition of “The Star-Spangled Banner.”
Students submitted audition videos, which were evaluated by the Ashford University Commencement Committee for clarity, musicality, melody, intervals, and ease in relating to the audience. Top selections were posted to the Ashford University Facebook page, where students, alumni, and guests voted for their favorite.
Fields, 24, started singing as a child at local churches with her mom. When she heard about the competition to sing at Ashford’s commencement, she instantly decided to participate.
“When I was a little girl, my aunt retired from the U.S. Navy and my mother and I sang the national anthem together for her,” Fields said. “From that day forward, I’ve continued to sing it for many events.”
Currently stationed at Barksdale Air Force Base in Bossier City, La., Fields credits Ashford’s online model for allowing her the flexibility to continue her education while deployed. “Studying online was very convenient for my busy and nomadic lifestyle,” she said.
Fields will be traveling to San Diego with her boyfriend for her performance, and to celebrate when she receives her diploma. Graduation ceremonies are at 9:00 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. at the San Diego Convention Center.
Fields looks forward to making her parents and grandparents proud when she receives her degree. “When I walk across the stage, I will finally be able to say ‘mission accomplished,’” she said.
Watch Giavonia Fields’ award-winning national anthem audition video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=si5SVJbrWuY
About Ashford University
Where heritage meets innovation – that’s Ashford University. At Ashford, students discover relevant degree programs, innovative technology, and cherished tradition. Ashford offers associates, bachelor’s, and master’s online degree programs, while the Clinton, Iowa campus offers bachelor’s programs. Whether on campus or online, Ashford students enjoy the same supportive community. For more information, please visit www.ashford.edu, www.facebook.com/ashforduniversity, www.twitter.com/AshfordU, or call Shari Winet, Vice President of Public Relations, at 858.513.9240 x2513.