UM Alumni Stars

Amber Kelley Experience, Spring 2019

Every year since 1967, University of Mobile sends graduates into the world to fulfill their professional calling for a Great Commission purpose. Since the first graduating class of 67 students, that number has grown to over 12,000 alumni – men and women whose spiritual formation and intellectual development were shaped during their years at a Christ-centered university.

It’s an education that builds servant leaders who are making a difference. We call some of them Alumni Stars.

“The Alumni Stars program was created in 2017 to honor graduates of University of Mobile while inspiring current students in their future career paths,” said Lauren McCaghren, senior director of alumni programs and director of Torch Society.

Alumni Stars are selected by faculty in the school from which they graduated and are featured to current students within the school.

THE 2018 ALUMNI STARS ARE:

Christy Amick of Theodore, Alabama. Representing the School of Education, Amick is principal of Chickasaw Elementary School. Amick graduated in 1999 with a Bachelor of Science in elementary education/early childhood education.

She went on to obtain a master’s degree in educational leadership. Amick served as a third grade teacher in the Mobile County Public School System from 1999 to 2013. She was named assistant principal at Chickasaw Elementary in Chickasaw City Schools and was promoted to principal in 2015. Amick has made significant contributions to the field of education in her many years as an educator.

Dr. Alan Floyd of Mobile, Alabama. Representing the School of Christian Studies, Floyd is senior pastor of Cottage Hill Baptist Church. Floyd graduated in 1989 with a Bachelor of Arts in religion.

He went on to earn a Master of Divinity from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and Doctor of Ministry from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. A gifted communicator of the gospel, Floyd started pastoring Cottage Hill Baptist Church in November 2012. Since then, Cottage Hill has baptized over 750 people and has more than doubled in attendance. They are now averaging over 1,500 in Sunday morning worship.

Meredith Carlson King of Mobile, Alabama. Representing the Alabama School of the Arts, King is an elementary music teacher at Prichard Preparatory School. She graduated in 2015 with a Bachelor of Science in music.

As a UM student, King volunteered with the Prichard Children’s Choir and tutoring program. She also traveled with the ensembles Sofree and Voices of Mobile in the university’s Alabama School of the Arts. After graduating, she directed Sofree and the middle and high school choirs at UMS-Wright Preparatory School. She has led her choirs to district and state superior ratings and is a College Board-certified music theory and composition instructor. King said she firmly believes the instruction and opportunities given to her at UM molded her career into ministry. She is married to fellow UM alumnus Joel King ’15 and serves with him in music ministry at Luke 4:18 Fellowship.

Dr. Cheree Melton of Tuscaloosa, Alabama. Representing the College of Arts and Sciences, Melton is completing a fellowship in obstetrics at The University of Alabama. Melton graduated in 2009 with a Bachelor of Science in biology. She went on to obtain her medical degree at Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine in Spartanburg, South Carolina.

She recently completed residency in family medicine at The University of Alabama and its affiliated Druid City Hospital. Her special interests in medicine are adolescent female health, obstetrics, and long-acting reversible contraception, which is the topic of her ongoing research and for which she received the Outstanding Research Award during residency.

Tramaine Perry of Mobile, Alabama. Representing the School of Business, Perry is business banking officer vice president at BBVA Compass. Perry graduated in 2005 with a Bachelor of Science in computer information systems.

As a UM student, Perry was a member of the men’s basketball team and became the university’s all-time leader in seven statistical categories including scoring, rebounding, steals, and 5th all-time in assists. After graduating, Perry went on to serve as a business banking officer as well as a branch manager for BBVA Compass for eight years before taking on a leadership role in the small business arena as business banking officer vice president. He is involved in many outreach initiatives in the local community, including financial ambassador for Real Life Outreach, board of directors for the Alabama Kings Youth organization, member of the Alabama Leadership Initiative Committee and the 100 Black Men Organization.

Paul Read of Mobile, Alabama. Representing the School of Nursing in the College of Health Professions, Read is vice president and chief nursing executive at Springhill Medical Center. Read graduated in 1998 with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and in 2005 with a Master of Science in Nursing administration.

Read began working at Springhill Medical Center in 1990 as a unit secretary in ICU, and began his nursing career there after graduating from UM in 1998. In 2002, he was named chief nursing executive charged with promoting nursing and improving quality of care hospital-wide. He serves on advisory boards for the UM School of Nursing, Spring Hill College, Bishop State Community College and Alabama Southern Community College, and is a member of the American Organization of Nurse Executives, American Association of Critical Care Nurses, and American College of Healthcare Executives. He graduated from Leadership Mobile in 2005 and serves as a voice for healthcare in the Mobile area. In addition, he recently retired from the U.S. Navy at the rank of commander, serving four years of active duty and as executive officer of a forward resuscitative surgical company supporting USMC Forces.

Stephanie Verkouille of Satsuma, Alabama. Representing the School of Health and Sports Science in the College of Health Professions, Verkouille teaches girls’ physical education at Saraland Middle School. Verkouille graduated in 2000 with a Bachelor of Science in global business.

She continued her education by obtaining a certificate in marketing education and alternative bachelor’s certificate in teaching Physical Education for P-12. She has obtained many fitness certifications, including group fitness and personal trainer. She serves as assistant girls’ volleyball coach, and teaches as an adjunct PE instructor at University of Mobile. She previously taught at North Mobile Christian School, Springhill Athletic Club, the YMCA and was co-owner of Outdoor Boot Camp Fitness. She is active at Redemption Church and her daughter, Madison, serves as a University of Mobile Ambassador.

For more information about Alumni Stars and other alumni programs, contact the University of Mobile Alumni Office at 251.442.2587 or visit umobile.edu/alumni.

About the Author
Amber Kelley

Amber Kelley