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Charleston Southern University > CSU News > Hugh Pressley: A Lifelong Learner

Hugh Pressley: A Lifelong Learner

Marketing and Communication // 05.04.2017

Hugh Pressley

There was no father in Hugh Pressley’s life as he grew up in Durham, NC. His mother constantly preached getting an education, though, and Hugh just might have taken her urgings to the extreme. After graduating from UNC in Chapel Hill with a BA in Spanish, Pressley joined the Navy. While stationed in Charleston, Pressley felt like he needed more education.

This Saturday, Pressley will walk across the stage at the North Charleston Coliseum to receive his second college degree. He graduated from Charleston Southern with a BA in English.  He was also given the Education department’s top award.

“CSU fit my needs,” says Pressley.  “Growing-up, my mom was very spiritual and I wanted to honor her by enrolling in a Christian university.”

Pressley is one of those life-long learners. “I just loved school,” he said. “I always felt comfortable in the classroom.”

Now 37, married with two children, Pressley will move to St. Louis for his wife’s job.  But he’s not done. Pressley has been accepted into the online program at Texas Tech in order to secure his PhD.  His goal is to teach high school English and eventually become a college professor.

Charleston Southern University's 2017 Commencement ceremony will be held on Saturday, May 6 at 10:00 a.m. in the North Charleston Coliseum.

The CSU Class of 2017 will include 657 students. The most popular degree programs from the Class of 2017 are:

  • Business
  • Nursing
  • Kinesiology
  • Criminal Justice
  • Elementary and early childhood education
  • Psychology
  • Biology

Joan Berry-Robinson, Vice President and General Manager for Boeing South Carolina, will deliver the keynote message to this year's graduating class.

Charleston Business magazine recently recognized Berry-Robinson as one of the 50 most-influential people in Charleston. She also received the Woman of Distinction and Accomplishment award from Washington State African American Achievement Awards team and the Most Powerful Women in Business by Black Enterprise.

Berry said her passion is “aspiring future generations to love STEAM careers. I love to inspire children to be smart, talented, innovative engineers, technologist, mathematicians and scientist for the future of our nation and the world.”

A native of Hollywood, California, Berry earned her Bachelor of Science degree from California State Polytechnic University and a Master of Science in Engineering Management and Business from University of California.


Founded in 1964, Charleston Southern University is a private, four-year liberal arts college. CSU is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) and is affiliated with the South Carolina Baptist Convention. The university's vision is to be a Christian university nationally recognized for integrating faith in learning, leading and serving.