Creating a Brighter Future – Meet the Class of 2025
Kent State’s Class of 2025 stands tall – more than 3,982 stories tall. Each of our new, first-year students offers a unique and engaging story.
These students come to Kent State from 39 U.S. states and Puerto Rico. This class of first-year students also includes students from 22 countries around the world.
The average GPA of these students is an all-time high of 3.50. 14% of Kent State’s Class of 2025 are in the Honors College – which also sets a record as the largest incoming group. Nearly three in 10 students are the first in their families to attend college.
We asked a few members of The Class of 2025 to share their stories with us. We asked why they chose to come to Kent State, who helped them with that decision, what they’re excited about now that they’re on campus and what their dream job would be after graduation. We also asked them: if they could send a message to themselves in 2025, what would they say?
Meet Blessing Mupinga
Blessing Mupinga (She/Her/Hers)
Major: Aeronautics - Professional Pilot
Blessing’s path to Kent State may have been a little shorter than others. She’s originally from the Kent area and both of her parents have been teaching at the university since 2008. She also has two older siblings who are Kent State alumni.
So when she was asked about what influenced her decision to attend Kent State, Blessing said, “To be honest, it was 100% my immediate family,” and that” it was just tradition to attend Kent State in some sort of way.”
Aside from her family’s influence, Blessing also chose Kent State “because of the outstanding reputation the Aeronautics program has.”
Blessing is excited about living on campus, but acknowledges that living close to home “makes my transition to independence more subtle. I would have felt way too underprepared to do this all on my own.”
After graduation, her dream would be to move out of state to work as a corporate pilot or to be employed by a commercial airline.
Blessing's message to herself in 2025
“Dear Blessing, I knew you could do it. I’m so proud of you and all that you’ve done to get to your current status. Now go out there and change the world by living up to the meaning of your name. Your journey has just begun, don’t stop or look back until you realize your final destination.”
Meet Kylee Livengood
Kylee Livengood (She, Her, Hers)
Kylee grew up just 15 minutes away from Kent State and has an older sister who also attended. Making the decision to attend Kent State was easy for Kylee, especially with her sister’s help with the application process and in getting connected to campus.
“I was pretty familiar with Kent State, and I knew that they had one of the top nursing programs in the state of Ohio.” She said that she’s most excited about meeting new people and experiencing the fun atmosphere of the Kent Campus. After graduation, Kylee’s dream job is to be a nurse practitioner.
Kylee's message to herself in 2025
“I hope all my hard work paid off, and I hope I had a great four years that I’ll always remember.”
CLASS OF 2025 BY THE NUMBERS
Meet Arianna Kemp
Arianna Kemp (She/They)
Major: Special Education, with a minor in costume design
Arianna first heard about Kent State in her senior year of high school as part of a Project GRAD class. Project GRAD-Akron is a non-profit education reform entity that offers programs, support, and scholarships for underrepresented youth from kindergarten through career classes.
Arianna said she chose to apply to Kent State because it was close to home and “the programs here are really dope.”
The factors that influenced her decision were which college would allow her to be closest to her home and which college offered the best scholarships.
Arianna said that her dream job would be to help people with disabilities and the one thing she’d like people to know about her is that “I’m not as mean as I look.”
Arianna's message to herself in 2025
“Congrats on not dropping out!”
Meet Maliq Dancy
Maliq Dancy (He/Him/His)
Maliq was part of the first group of students in the Lebron James Family Foundation (LJFF) iPromise program and that’s how he discovered Kent State as an option for college. The scholarship he received from the Kent State was a key factor in his college decision. Maliq said,
“My parents probably helped me most in choosing my college, this way it was not too far from home, but still far enough where I feel independent,” Maliq said.
Being a biomedical engineer would be Maliq’s dream job, and the one thing he’d like other members of The Class of 2025 to know about him would be “I’m really introverted.”
Maliq's message to himself in 2025
“I would ask what I’m doing with my life at that point.”
CLASS OF 2025 BY THE NUMBERS
Meet Michelle Stanley
Michelle Stanley (She/Her/Hers)
Major: Fashion Design
Michelle learned about Kent State in her junior year of high school from her school’s college advisor after they discussed her interest in studying fashion. Her advisor helped her plan for college and answer all of her questions about life after high school.
“I liked the atmosphere and it wasn’t far from home,” Michelle said. “There are endless opportunities here at Kent and it feels like home. “
Michelle is excited to learn how to use the digital software relating to art and fashion. While she doesn’t really have a dream job, Michelle said she would like to be “the business owner of my own brand” “But as I build up to that, I would like to work as an assistant designer at Nike.”
What she would like the other members of The Class of 2025 to know about her?
“Just like them, I’m navigating adulthood, and I am also on the road to success and whatever that looks like for me. Just as they are or they wouldn’t be here.”
Michelle's message to herself in 2025
“Everything will work itself out. Stop overthinking and go for what you want.”
Meet Carlissa Robinson
Carlissa Robinson (She/Her/Hers)
Major: Early Childhood Education
Carlissa first experienced Kent State as part of the Lebron James Family Foundation (LJFF) that allowed students in an ACT/SAT prep program to stay on the Kent Campus for three weeks.
“They have everything I was looking for in a college and they had the major I was looking for,” she said. “They had different clubs and programs I was looking for, and they had the people I was looking for.”
Carlissa was part of the LJFF’s iPromise program and has received a scholarship from Kent State. She said that the people who most influenced her college decision were her mother and her twin, Asakee.
The thing that excited Carlissa the most about attending Kent State is “the thrill of not knowing what you are going to run into each day. Whether that be a game night in the dorm room lounge or a movie night on the grass.” Her dream job after college is to become an educator and help her students as much as possible, so that they can persist to graduation.
The one thing that Carlissa would like other members of The Class of 2025 to know about her is “That I am a Queer African-American woman.”
Carlissa's message to herself in 2025
“No matter where you are now, I know you are doing great things. I know you did your best, and I am proud of you.”
CLASS OF 2025 BY THE NUMBERS
Meet Mary Jewell
Mary Jewell (She/Her/Hers)
Major: Environmental Conservation Biology
Living in Akron, Mary was familiar with the colleges that were nearby. When the time came to apply to colleges, her parents encouraged her to apply to Kent State and a few other colleges. Mary said “I thought I had may plan all figured out, but in the end, I am very happy they encouraged me to apply.” Now that she’s on campus, Mary is excited about all the events and different clubs . “There is always something going on,” she said.
As for her dream job after graduation, Mary described herself as “in between dreams at the moment, but I have wanted ultimately to be a National Park manager for a while so I think that’s the dream I’m following right now.”
The one thing Mary would like others in The Class of 2025 to know is that “I am always listening to music – so if they have any suggestions, let me know”
Mary's message to herself in 2025
“No matter what path you end up following, as long as you believe it is the right path for you – I’m proud of you.”