The James Kerney Campus 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. Receiving awards and certificates 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. They will also be part of the college's graduation ceremonies on May 22.

There were 54 graduates of the Career Training Institute, which prepares students for office and culinary careers, 76 graduates of the GED (General Equivalency Diploma) program, and 82 English Language Institute graduates who came from 28 different countries.

Students were awarded several MCCC Foundation Board scholarships, as well as scholarships from the Urban League Guild, the Metropolitan Trenton African American Chamber of Commerce, Wachovia, and Dr. Paul Janssen.

County Executive Brian Hughes gave opening remarks, along with MCCC President Patricia C. Donohue and Vice President Beverly Richardson. Three successful students spoke about how the college 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 award was presented to MCCC's Don Jones, left, by Executive Dean Diane Campbell and Vice President Beverly Richardson for his 18 years of serving as this event's master of ceremonies, and for entertaining each year with his magnificent voice.

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