Celebration of Academic Achievement
May 13, 2008
West Windsor, N.J.: Guests could feel the excitement at Trenton's War Memorial building on May 13, when the James Kerney Campus of Mercer County Community College hosted an enthusiastic audience for its Celebration of Academic Achievement. Awarded were 270 students who completed both credit and noncredit programs.
The 58 degree program graduates began their studies at the James Kerney campus or took most of their classes there. There were 54 graduates of the Career Training Institute, which prepares students for careers in office automation and culinary careers, 76 graduates of the GED (General Equivalency Diplome), and 82 English Language Institute graduates who came from 28 countries.
County Executive Brian Hughes gave opening remarks, and three successful students spoke about how MCCC changed their lives.
Success stories abounded at this event, and three students spoke about how their programs have contributed to a new direction in their lives. Representing credit programs was Kene Booker-Taylor of Trenton who graduates this May with a degree in Nursing. A returning student who had studied psychology at California State University, she led fundraising efforts to assist fellow Nursing students.
Completing the Office Automation program at Mercer's Career Training Institute, Luz Garro-Fallas spoke about how she has learned so much in so little time, and praised the program's teachers who "truly care about their students and want us to become assets to our employers."
Speaking for the English Language institute was Oksana Tokash of the Ukraine, who came to the U.S. two years ago. She had been a math teacher in her country. She thanked the college "for making me feel so special," and said she plans to continue at Mercer in credit classes.
A special recognition award was presented to MCCC's Don Jones by Vice President Beverly Richardson and Executive Dean Diane Campbell for his 18 years of serving as this event's master of ceremonies, and for entertaining each year with his magnificent voice.
|President Donohue welcomed guests from the War Memorial stage.|
|Counselor Linda Ertingu with graduates Angel Lugo, an Architecture major, and Alfreda Bradsbery, a Social Services major. Lugo will be transferring to NJIT to continue his studies in Architecture. Lugo, who returned to college several times, plans to switch her career from Nursing to Social Services. She said discipline, devotion, dedication were the most important lessons she learned.|
Several MCCC Foundation Board scholarships were announced and accepted, as were scholarships from the Urban League Guild, the Metropolitan Trenton African American Chamber of Commerce, Wachovia, and Dr. Paul Janssen.
|Don Jones was honored for his 18 years of serving as Master of Ceremonies for this event. Each year he entertains with his wonderful voice.|
Student speaker from the Career Training Institute Program, Luz Garro-Fallas, is applauded by Dr. Beverly Richardson and Monica Weaver as she leaves the podium. She works as a tutor and counselor for a hispanic association and plans to enter credit programs at Mercer.
|Nursing graduate Kene Booker-Taylor spoke for the credit programs.|
Angel Lugo shakes hands with Board Chair Skip Cimino while Dr. Donohue greets another student.
|Oksana Tokash graduated from the English Language Institute.|
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