Keiser University Valedictorian Credits Family, High School Math Teacher and Others for Success

Valedictorian Hayley Fudge sent special thanks to those who helped pave the way to educational and career success at Keiser University’s Statewide Commencement Ceremony held at the RP Funding Center in Lakeland, Florida on Saturday, January 27, 2024.

The first in her family to go to college, Fudge shared that it was her parents Kim and Tim Fudge, and her grandparents who made it all possible to reach for the stars. “The sacrifice and support of my family has been paramount in being successful while getting my degree during one of the most stressful times of my life due to the pandemic,” she said while adding that it was her high school statistics and accounting teacher Pamela Gervase’s ‘charismatic personality, wonderful teaching abilities, and suggestion to learn more about accounting’ that nourished her passion for math and helped spark her interest in a career in the field.

Fudge, who graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Accounting as an online student from Keiser’s Lakeland Campus, also sent appreciation to Dawn Crawford, her campus’ Associate Director of Student Services for helping to strengthen her resume and prepare for her job interview. Already serving as a tax accountant at Lakeland’s C.P.S. Group CPAs, she encourages others to remain steadfast in their pursuits by clearly visualizing their goals and the roadmap toward them. “Always stay true to yourself and do not make excuses. You can and will succeed if you manifest your dreams,” she smiled.

Fudge joined fellow Keiser University valedictorians Caylie Insua (Lakeland), Richard Berry and Tazeen Berry (Orlando), and Jefferson Pena Cordero (e-Campus).

Keiser University’s Bachelor of Arts degree in Accounting focuses on accounting, general business, ethics, analytical, and communication skills needed in today’s professional environment. The program provides the unique skills needed in various areas of accounting such as taxation, auditing, managerial/cost, financial, governmental, not-for-profit, and accounting-related data analytics as well as general organizational concepts. The Bachelor of Arts degree in Accounting also uses various business applications and accounting-related software programs to enhance students’ knowledge.

Keiser University is a private, independent, non-profit university serving nearly 20,000 students at 21 Florida campuses, online, and two international sites. Founded in 1977 by Chancellor Arthur Keiser, Ph., and Evelyn Keiser, Keiser University currently offers more than 100 degrees from associate to doctoral level. Keiser University is a designated Hispanic-Serving Institution, a member of the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities and was ranked No. 21 in the U.S. in Social Mobility by U.S. News and World Report in 2023-24.

Keiser University Lakeland Campus Valedictorian Hayley Fudge


KU Lakeland Valedictorian Hayley Fudge with her father Tim and her grandmother Barbara Fudge

KU Lakeland Valedictorian Hayley Fudge with her parents Tim and Kim Fudge


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At Keiser University students always come first, our reputation was built in Florida. Keiser is a not-for-profit university with over 40 years of history, thousands of graduates on campus and online. Now, with a 100-acre residential campus, this can be your right fit. We are Keiser University!

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Keiser University is pleased to join forces with guest lecturer, and New York Times Bestselling author Don Yaeger, to offer The Greatness Leadership Initiative: Transforming the World in the Face of Change. This open, online course is available free of charge to all in the Keiser University community. Stay tuned for more information!

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