Special to HNN Provided by Marshall University

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - U.S. Marine Corps Maj. Matthew M. Powers, a former Yeager Scholar at Marshall University, will be the featured speaker Friday, May 3, at the annual Elizabeth Gibson Drinko Honors Convocation.

The convocation, part of Marshall's 19th annual Celebration of Academics, starts at 7 p.m. in the Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center on the Huntington campus and is free to the public. Nearly 160 students will be recognized for academic achievement by their colleges and departments. The convocation will be followed by a public reception.

The event is named for the late Elizabeth Gibson Drinko, who was a longstanding supporter of academic programs at Marshall.

Powers' visit continues a tradition of having an alumna/alumnus return to speak to the students. He graduated with honors from Marshall in May 2000 with a degree in economics.

Powers graduated from Fairland High School before attending Marshall. Currently, he is working towards an LLM in International Law at The Judge Advocate General's Legal Center and School with the U.S. Army in Charlottesville, Va.

Powers completed his initial Marine Corps training in 2002. He was deployed to Iraq in 2004 and 2005. The Marine Corps then allowed him to attend the University of Minnesota School of Law, from where he earned his Juris Doctor degree in May 2008.

Beginning in October 2008, Powers began serving as a prosecutor and was then deployed for a third time to Afghanistan as an Operational Law Attorney.

He resumed his role as a prosecutor after returning from Afghanistan in April 2010 and soon became a Special Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Marine Corps in the eastern district of North Carolina.

Powers' personal decorations include the Navy-Marine Corps Commendation Medal with Gold Star, the Navy-Marine Corps Achievement Medal with Gold Star and the Presidential Unit Citation.