Telena Turner is Commencement 2020 honorary student speaker

Telena Turner

Telena Turner is the honorary student speaker for the Class of 2020. Although the pandemic delayed the in person commencement, Turner, a native of Haysi, Virginia, is eager to walk across the stage.

Turner received her BA degree in Communication Studies and has a minor in English Literature. The first-generation college student was summa cum laude.

While at UVA Wise, Turner was an undergraduate teaching assistant in rhetorical criticism and a Peake Honors Freshman Mentor. She also served as a resident advisor in the Office of Housing and Residence Life.

Turner also participated in undergraduate research at UVA Wise. She presented research at the National Communication Association titled You’re Funny, I like You: Clapback Marketing and Consumer Perceptions of Brand Credibility and Authenticity. She also presented at the National Council on Undergraduate Research in Georgia on the topic of Deconstructing Binaries: Analyzing a Message from The Foundation for a Better Life. She also presented at national conference in Edmond, Oklahoma.

A student member of the UVA Wise Board, Turner was a chapter president in the National Society of Leadership and Success, a Student Ambassador, editor of the Jimson Weed, and was a member of the Darden Society.

She is now at James Madison University working toward a master of arts in communication and advocacy with a strategic communication concentration.

She is also working as a marketing intern with the Adult Learning Program of Wise County Public Schools since February 2020.