SANFORD - Central Carolina Community College celebrated the achievements of the Class of 2016 as the school observed its 53rd Commencement Exercises on May 12 at the Dennis A. Wicker Civic Center.
The graduating students entered the main hall to the skirl of a bagpipe, a CCCC tradition.
"Graduation represents the culmination of the efforts of all divisions of the College along with those of our graduating students, which truly makes it the most joyful day on the academic calendar for everyone," said CCCC President Dr. T. Eston Marchant. "As you go out in the community, you will see how beloved CCCC is in the three-county service area and the surrounding region. This admiration for the College should make our graduates feel proud of our institution and good about their decision to enroll at CCCC for their higher education experience.
"Always remember that you represent us with your present and future employers and stand as our greatest advocates, and the essential skills and education you have received from us will continue to enhance our service area counties with a highly qualified workforce and improve the quality of life for us all," said Dr. Marchant. "With several new programs and new facilities just over the horizon, it is indeed a highly exciting time in the history of the College and we are so pleased and proud that our graduates today were a part of the College at this time."
The Class of 2016 has approximately 800 students - including those expected to graduate after attending summer classes, who are expected to receive 842 credentials (associate degrees, diplomas, and certificates).
Three commencement exercises, at 9 a.m., 11:30 a.m. and 3 p.m., were held to accommodate the number of graduates. That also allowed those who will complete their studies during the summer to walk in a graduation ceremony, since there will be no summer commencement exercises.
Student speakers were Octavia Brown of West End at the 9 a.m. graduation, Jackie Desmarais of Sanford at the 11:30 a.m. graduation, and Chriss Harvin of Lillington at the 3 p.m. graduation.
Brown is a graduate of the Dental Hygiene program. Desmarais received the Associate of Arts degree. Harvin is a graduate of the Industrial Systems Technology program.
Brown addressed the graduates by saying that their hard work is paying off and they were here because they believed in themselves. "You walked out of your comfort zone and awakened your mind to knowledge. You decided at that moment that you were going to build a better life for yourself and your family. It is hard to believe that you made a decision that big just by filling out a college application," said Brown.
Desmarais told her fellow graduates that CCCC helped her become a better friend, daughter, student, and individual. "I now feel ready to move on to bigger, better adventures but will not forget my experiences here," she said. "I know it feels like we're saying goodbye, but we will take our smiles, tears, jokes, advice, and friendship into everything we do next like transferring to a university or starting a career, just remember your life is a remarkable occasion -- I have no doubt that you will rise to it!"
Harvin noted that this is a great day as the graduates have come to the end of another season of life and the beginning of a new one. "We all have different reasons why we wanted to come to CCCC and add something new to ourselves. We will each go out and find what is awaiting us in our new world of options," said Harvin. "If I had anything to impart to you today, it would be the word dedication. Always be dedicated to your duties whether they are as a student or teacher or as an employer or employee because someone is looking to you to be an example that they can follow."
Ken Hoyle Jr., Vice President of Student Services, recognized Dr. Arlen Mills during the 9 a.m. ceremony. Dr. Mills is retiring from the faculty of the Veterinary Medical Technology program.
Dr. Brian Merritt, CCCC Vice President of Student Learning and Chief Academic Officer, presented the graduates. Jan Hayes, CCCC Board of Trustees member, conferred the credentials.
Following each commencement exercise, family and friends gathered in the Civic Center's foyer or outside to take pictures of their graduate's special day.
During the graduation exercises, students with the highest grade point averages in their divisions were recognized: Megan Marie Blair, Kelly Sanders Boone, Diana Rene Buckwell, Hunter Aaron Cagle, Alyssa Brianne Campbell, Ashley Elizabeth Childress, Jeremy Robert Clarke-Patterson, Wayne T. Cole, Sabine Doris Brueckner Collins, Juliette Crisostomo, Kassandra Michelle DeJesus, Diane Lau Hampshire, James B. Johnson III, Sydney Irene Johnson, Lacey Anne Kuenzler, Sarah Michaeleen Lewis, David LeRoy Pope III, and Michelle Marie Szabo.
Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society graduates were also recognized at each commencement: at 9 a.m., Christine Michelle Bartel, Lauren Danielle Black, Megan Marie Blair, Tabitha Elizabeth Brown, Alyssa Brianne Campbell, Melissa J. Chavez, Ashley Elizabeth Childress, Sabine Doris Brueckner Collins, Silvia D. Veronica De La Rosa-Clark, Katie Lynn Field, Sydney Irene Johnson, Charlotte Elizabeth Knettel, Andrea Lewis Lamb, Allisha Anne Markham, Alexandra Blake Marshall, and Morgan Lane Saunders; at 11:30 a.m., Jason Jordy Aguilar, Douglas Michael Amrhein, Briana Jacinda Autry, Christopher Burt Bennett, Sarah Elizabeth Bogan, Gail Norris Brown, Alex John Daniels, Destiny Chantell Freeman, Holly Nicole Hair, Diane Lau Hampshire, Daniel Stephen Harrison, Christopher Michael Hilburn-Trenkle, Rosemary S. Hilliard, Jarkayla Sierra Jackson, Shaconna Britany Jemmott, Landis Scowt Johnson, Lacey Anne Kuenzler, Justin Gregory Leville, Lorena Martinez, CaSandra Lushall McCormick, Dhalia Waleed Mohamed, Amy Irene Naranjo, Amie Elizabeth Norquist, Linda Cherie Pereira, Isaac William Phillips, Latoya Danielle Roberson, Rhonda Fallis Ryser, Rosser Trent Sapp, Sarah Ann Shannon-Mohamed, Erik Michael Switzer, Eveann M. Ward, Autumn Marie Williams, and Jennifer McLean Womble; at 3 p.m., Sarah Marie Bastress, Diana Rene Buckwell, Kelsea Carolyn Dieser, Jamie Lee Ann Fitzgerald, Janeth Edith Graham, Kaitlyn Marie Hejny, Angela Bilinia Humphries, Emily Grace Humphries, Kaleb MacIntyre Janson, Terrencia Chantelle McLean, Anita G. Oleson, Kristan Angel Osoria, Gregory Scott Perry, Liz N. Rodriguez, Vivian McNeill Smith, Mareise Dietrich Weldon, and David Michael Worswick.
Pictures from the commencement exercises can be downloaded at www.cccc.edu. The commencement soon can be viewed online at 4CNCLive.com.
A large audience attended the Central Carolina Community College commencement exercises on May 12 at the Dennis A. Wicker Civic Center in Sanford.
There are approximately 800 members of the Class of 2016 at Central Carolina Community College. Commencement exercises were held on May 12 at the Dennis A. Wicker Civic Center in Sanford.
Octavia Brown, a graduate of the Dental Hygiene program, was the student speaker at the Central Carolina Community College 9 a.m. commencement exercises held on May 12 at the Dennis A. Wicker Civic Center in Sanford.
Jackie Desmarais, who received the Associate in Arts degree, was the student speaker at the Central Carolina Community College 11:30 a.m. commencement exercises held on May 12 at the Dennis A. Wicker Civic Center.
Chriss Harvin, a graduate of the Industrial Systems Technology program, was the student speaker at the Central Carolina Community College 3 p.m. commencement exercises held on May 12 at the Dennis A. Wicker Civic Center in Sanford.
Ken Hoyle Jr. (right), Vice President of Student Services, recognized Dr. Arlen Mills (left) during the 9 a.m. CCCC graduation ceremony on May 12 at the Dennis A. Wicker Civic Center in Sanford. Dr. Mills is retiring from the faculty of the Veterinary Medical Technology program.