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MCCC to Host Commencement Ceremonies
Thursday, May 20, 5:30 p.m.
Central Quadrangle, West Windsor Campus

1,066 graduates this year

The keynote speaker will be Dr. George Boggs, president and CEO of the American Association of Community Colleges, the primary advocacy organization for the nation's 1,100 community colleges.

The student speaker will be David Hoyt, recipient of a prestigious Jack Kent Cooke scholarship of $30,000 per year for up to three years to continue his education.

This year's Grand Marshall will be Professor of Fine Art and Art History Mel Leipzig.

During the ceremony one of Mercer's faculty members will receive the annual MCCC Distinguished Teaching Award. Each year the name of the awardee is kept secret.

The ceremonies will be broadcast live on MCCC Cable TV Channels 20 and 26.

Honors Convocation
Thursday, May 20, 3 p.m., Kelsey Theatre

Some Noteworthy MCCC Graduates:

David Hoyt, Liberal Arts
David C. Hoyt will represent MCCC students as the Student Speaker. Hoyt is the recipient of the Jack Kent Cooke Scholarship, created by the billionaire philanthropist. Given to only 40 community college students across the country, the honor includes a $30,000 per year scholarship for up to three years.

Hoyt, who maintains a 4.0 GPA, is president of the MCCC chapter of Phi Theta Kappa international honor society, and president of the college's international language honor society. He is past editor of the student newspaper, The College Voice, for which he earned an award from the N.J. Collegiate Press Association. He served as co-producer/technical director of MCN Live, the student weekly cable television news show.

With the goal of being an international diplomat or businessman, Hoyt's studies at Mercer have included Chinese, Arabic and Japanese. He plans to pursue a dual major in international relations and economics, with a minor in Asian studies, and is now deciding where he will be continuing his education. More here.

Tajh Laster, Exercise Science
As he prepares for graduation, Exercise Science major Tajh Laster says, "I am bubbling inside to get to the next phase of my life. I feel I am ready."
A graduate of Trenton Central High School, Laster says his mother was a guiding force, as was Mercer's PASS program (Programs for Academic Services and Success). He notes that staff members were always available to help, but just as important was the cohesiveness and family atmosphere. "You could have a real conversation with them. They gave us support and encouragement," he says.

Laster is using his leadership skills at the Boys and Girls Club in Trenton, where he spent time during the spring semester. Working with youngsters from kindergarten through high school, he organized games, led a Fitness Camp, and took the children on trips. He says he will continue to work there over the summer.

Laster plans to transfer to William Paterson University in the fall to study kinesiology and earn his teaching certification in Physical Education.

Mother/Daughter Lisa DeMilio, Education,
and Bianca Tagariello, International Business
Mother/daughter Lisa DeMilio and Bianca Tagariello will graduate together. Adult student Lisa DeMilio, an Education major, has made the most of her Mercer experience, including serving as a mother figure to the "youngsters" in her classes. DeMilio is, in fact, the mother of a student in several of her classes. She is attending Mercer at the same time as her daughter, Bianca Tagariello, an International Business major.

Both are graduating in May and both will continue at Rider University. DeMilio is the current president of the Kappa Delta Pi International Education Honor Society and says that Mercer's Education program has been great for her. Daughter Bianca says she has enjoyed having her mom as a classmate. Clearly Mercer is a family affair, as DeMilio's son just began his college education at Mercer this spring.

Ashley Rose Stumbaugh, Business
Student leader Ashley Rose Stumbaugh served as vice president of the Student Government Association and was selected by her peers for the 2010 Student of the Year and Community Service Awards. A New Jersey STARS student and a scholar in the Honors Program, she is a three-star member of the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society and will receive the Fred Anker Memorial Scholarship in Business at the May 20 Honors Convocation. She served as director, producer and news anchor with the student television news show, MCN Live.

Stumbaugh took a leading role in raising charitable funds for the March of Dimes, chaired a week-long fundraising effort for the Trenton Area Soup Kitchen and participated in a lunch-making day for them. She gave many hours to a craft night for Homefront children.

She has been accepted to American University in Washington with a $10,000 annual scholarship, and will study business administration with concentrations in economics and broadcast communication. Her advice to new students is, "Definitely get involved. It makes your experience a lot fuller and there is so much to learn outside the classroom."

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