UMHB President Randy O’Rear, right, and UMHB Board of Trustees Chair Drayton McLane III, center, congratulate Kathryn Scott during the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor’s spring commencement ceremony at Crusader Stadium in Belton on Saturday. The university’s 163rd graduating class is the largest in UMHB history. An estimated 544 students were awarded degrees.

BELTON — The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor saw its largest graduating class — 540 — receive degrees at its spring Commencement Saturday evening.

This was the university’s 163rd graduating class. Of the graduates, 481 students received bachelor’s degrees, 46 received master’s degrees, and 17 earned doctoral degrees.

Student awards given during the ceremony included the Provost Medal for highest overall GPA, which was shared by 18 students, who each graduated with perfect 4.0 grade point averages: Emma Andrews of Georgetown, Tyler Baker of Victoria, Rachel Clemons of Belton, Hannah Edwards of Cypress, Jordyn Finkenkeller of Georgetown, Erica Garcia of Temple, Rebekah Graff of Dripping Springs, Deanna Hopkinson of Katy, Carly Leweke of Katy, Matthew McKinnon of Temple, Megan Mendiola of West, Hannah Rodgers of Granbury, Blake Runyan of Castle Rock, Colo., Shelby Russell of Huffman, Mikala Seeton of Azle, Jonathan Simmons of Tyler, Mikaela Spooner of Waco, and Chazz Upton of Kalispell, Mont.

The Loyalty Cup for the student who is most representative of the ideals, traditions and spirit of the university was given to Haleigh Grace Johnson of La Vernia.  Johnson was actively involved in campus life, Student Foundation, Welcome Week, student organizations and the Easter Pageant.

The President’s Award for meritorious service went to Daniel Beau Martinez of Granbury. Martinez served as the director of Crusader Knights and as the senior class president.