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Bladen Community College Celebrates Graduates

DUBLIN – Two hundred and thirty candidates for graduation moved their tassels from right to left as Bladen Community College awarded degrees, diplomas, and certificates to curriculum students on Thursday, May 16 in two well-attended ceremonies.

Likewise, 50 high school completion candidates received their high school credentials in an afternoon commencement ceremony at which BCC President Dr. Amanda Lee shared words of encouragement with the graduates.

Student graduate Cody Tucker gave remarks that included a description of the help and support he had received from Bladen Community College and Carolina Crossroads. He emotionally concluded, “They saved my life.”

More than one-third of the curriculum candidates received associate degrees in the arts and sciences that will transfer into four-year universities. Thirty-eight high school students, a record number, graduated with two years of college credits before their graduation dates from their respective high schools.

College vice president Jeff Kornegay welcomed graduates at both curriculum ceremonies and recognized special guests. Board of Trustees chair Dennis Troy gave warm greetings on behalf of the trustees to students, families, friends and guests assembled for the occasion.

Colors were presented by the Paul R. Brown Leadership Academy color guard and Shalonda McKoy sang a beautiful rendition of the national anthem. Jesus Romeo Ramos Pacheco, who is the public information officer
of BCC Student Government, provided an invocation.

Vice president for student services Barry Priest presented Molli Hall Nance a $1,000 Bladen Community College Foundation merit scholarship as class marshal and recognized Katie Summer Pontak with the North Carolina Community College System Academic Excellence Award. This award is given to one outstanding
student at each of the 58 community colleges.

The curriculum graduation address was delivered by Dan Gerlach, who is interim chancellor of East Carolina University. The former president of the Golden Leaf Foundation charged the graduates to be proud, be grateful, and to be not afraid.

He commended students for their success in reaching this milestone even in light of dealing recently with Hurricane Florence and remarked that Bladen County is made of people with “resilience and grit.”

With the conferring of degrees, diplomas, and certificates, Lee, the college president, declared the candidates as 2019 graduates of the college and concluded the ceremonies with the turning of tassels.

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