Misting rain gave way to a beautiful pink-streaked sunset as the procession of Tri-County Community College’s class of 2017 streamed outside to unite with friends and loved ones following the annual commencement ceremony on May 12 on the main campus in Peachtree.
Dr. Donna Tipton Rogers, president of TCCC, began the evening by congratulating the graduates on reaching this point in their educational career.
“Tonight is about you and your accomplishments,” said Tipton-Rogers, gesturing to the room, overflowing with guests and loved ones. “No matter whether you continue your educational journey or join the workforce, I want you to know that Tri-County Community College will always be here for you.”
Several annual faculty and staff awards were also given during the event, all nominated by faculty, staff and students. Deb Hogan, Steve Browning and Joan Ledford each received the Excellence in Teaching Award; Gloria Dockery was given the adjunct faculty Excellence in Teaching Award; and Charlene Wood, assistant to the president for Graham County operations, received the Excellence in Staff Award.
More than 170 students graduated from the college, with more than 180 credentials being conferred at the ceremony.
“This is an incredible group of dedicated and hardworking students,” Tipton-Rogers said. “Every day we strive to give our students the very best we can offer so that they, in turn, can help enrich the communities in which we all live, and this year’s graduates will exemplify that ideal.”
In an emotional high school equivalency graduation the following day, May 13, students gained the opportunity to speak about their experience at TCCC.
“I came back to school after 21 years,” said Jennifer Marescalo, graduate of the high school equivalency program, with tears in her eyes as she thanked each of her peers at the ceremony. “There were days that I wanted to give up and you each inspired me to continue. If I can do this, then the sky is the limit for anyone.”
Dr. Tipton-Rogers addressed the graduates’ struggles and their triumphs.
“No matter the struggles you faced, you each chose to come back and finish your education – for yourselves, your parents, your children, or even your friends – and we are so honored to have traveled this journey with you,” she said.
For more information about Tri-County Community College, please call (828) 837-6810.
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