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GCC Grads ‘jump-start’ into next chapter

Posted on Sunday June 1st 2014

CHRIS SHORES, Recorder, June 2, 2014

GREENFIELD — In the eyes of student speaker Michael Lewis, a new class of superstars graduated from Greenfield Community College on Saturday.

The college’s 51st annual commencement ceremony honored 282 students who earned associate degrees this year and 97 who earned certificates.

“We have completed this phase of the journey,” said Lewis. “This is the jump-start. This is the kickoff point… and you couldn’t have had a better place to do it from.”

Lewis — a former student trustee, a veteran and the co-founder of the college’s student veteran network — reminded his peers that life isn’t always easy. He had planned to graduate last year before a failed class got in the way.

“I was supposed to be leaving and I failed,” he said. “What I found out and what I learned the next day is that the sun still rose. It rose the day after that. … Reach for the stars. Keep your wings spread. Do not give up.”

GCC President Robert Pura kicked off the two-hour ceremony by telling graduates that education isn’t one-size-fits-all, and that the best schools offer a custom experience for each student.

He also reminded them to appreciate their surroundings as they began the next chapter in their lives.

“The American Dream needs an update and you are up to that task,” said Pura. “Maybe the greatest treasures you could dream of are right here … in your own backyard.”

Faculty speaker and peace activist Abbie Jenks said that, because of war, pollution and corporate greed, “the world and our country are in deep trouble now.”

But teaching GCC students has been her saving grace.

“My belief in helping others is transformed from one of duty to one of love, as I realize that we are all in this together,” she said. “We were, and are, bonded in the very, very difficult work of creating a culture of peace.”

Jenks later led a majority of the graduates in a pledge, in which students promised to try to improve the “social and environmental consequences” of any job or activity they take part in.

Students broke out into cheers and applause throughout the ceremony, including during award presentations and the awarding of diplomas. In a few cases, GCC faculty and foundation board members took the stage to award their graduating family members with diplomas.

Jenks, who taught human services as well as peace and social justice, was honored as a professor emeritus along with Peter Rosnick, a math teacher and former college dean.

Sharon Roth, an education professor, received the Robert Mugar Yacubian distinguished service award.

Commencement awards

Criminal Justice, Rebecca Holloway.

Music, Will Byler.

Excellence in Nursing Care, Andrea Gray.

Academic Excellence in Nursing, Kristie Timberlake.

International Student Scholastic Achievement, Natalia Masaitis.

The Donald Oberacker Award, Jennifer Christian, Tiffany Kozash.

Accounting, Madeleine Roberts.

Liberal Arts/English, Cameron Mediros.

Business Information Technology, Jean Martin.

Peer Tutors: Ernest Baird, Erica Lynn Bready, Mishaela L. Brennan, Lewis Nathan Chase III, Tara Leigh Johnson, Tiffany J. Kozash, Benjamin Lawton, Jeremy J. Mankowsky, Mary Elise Morris, Samuel D. Nelson, David Alan Perok, Haley Perret, Natalya Radionov, Wyatt Scherm-Martin, Patricia L. Waitkus, Rebecca Walsh.

Phi Theta Kappa: Randy Andrews, Ernest Baird, Elyse Bianchet, Ethan Bisaillion, Sarah Bohl, Mary Bordewieck, Mishaela Brennan, Rebecca D. Burleigh-Howes, William Burton, Will Byler, Elizabeth Carlton, Lewis Chase, Hannah Cleveland, Kathryn Collier, Cynthia Curtis, Victoria Damato, Emily Delnero, Shannon Dry, Katie Eldredge, Emily Ericson, Ana Ghencea, Patricia Goodwin, Tamara Grimard, Rebecca Hatch, Richard Hicks, Kelandra Hurd, Ariana Hyer, Kristian Johnson, Tara Johnson, Gregory Kendall, Viktoriya Khasanova, Tiffany Kozash, Wesley Krejmas, Benjamin Lawton, Jeremy Mankowsky, Ryan Mathers, Cameron A. Medeiros, Terry Mikulskis, Mary E Morris, Meghan A Murphy, Katherine Newport, Dawn Nims, Madeleine Roberts, Kelsey Rode, Michel Ryan, Wyatt Scherm-Martin, Justin Sessions, Kristie M. Timberlake, Brittany Tirrell, Jeremy G. Vandal, Brittany D. VonFeldt, Patricia Waitkus, Katelyn A. Wood, Matthew A. Yoder, Stephen B. Zacek.

GCC Class of 2014

Scott J Abdow, Bri Agenbroad, Eman Al-Siraji, Rayna Mira Aleshnick, Olga Y. Alforova-Bazukina, Scott Allison, Laurie Anderson, Mark R Anderson, Richard Eric Anderson, Ruth-Ann Anderson, Randy Kenneth Andrews, Katherine Aukstikalnis, Ashley Austin, Alexander Ayala-Palacin, Ernest Baird, Abigail E. Bak, Sondra J Bakke, Chelsea Dawn Ballard, Zlata Banar, Edna T. Bartlett, John F. Bean, Elizabeth A. Beaudet Kearns, Jonna L. White, Meredith J. Benson, Memory Mandida Bhebhe, Elyse Bianchet, Ethan B. Bisaillon, Jessica L. Bishop, Eric Christopher King Blevin, Zhanna A. Bocharnikova, Sarah L. Bohl, Samantha Boothroyd, Kathleen Elizabeth Bordewieck, Mary Catherine Bordewieck, Karen A. Bouquillon, Tyler J Bovat, Bridget E. Bowman, Erica Lynn Bready, William T. Breed, Mishaela L. Brennan, Debra Ann Breor, Christina Bridges, Yelena A. Briggs, Brian Brooks, Joseph Broska, Marc Brown, Nathaniel Jesse Brown, Samantha Browning, Christopher Browsky, Rebecca Burleigh-Howes, Ashley Busold, Will Conrad Byler, Jeanna Patrice Byrd, Maura K. Cabrera, Mark Caldwell, Virginia H. Canton, Timothy Capuano, Christopher Enrique Carantit, Hannah M. Cardin, Elizabeth A. Carlton, Hayley Cavender, Isabella Cespedes-Ashe, Lewis Nathan Chase III, Cody Chatterton, Stephen A Childs, Jennifer Christian, Jessica Cialek, Shanna Marie Clark, Hannah Elizabeth Cleveland, Ciji Ann Cody, Tanya L. Colby, Kathryn Collier, Gary Grant Conaway, Scott Andrew Cook, Cynthia Ann Curtis, Victoria A Damato, Evan S. Davies, Bryan G. Davis, Erin Leigh Degnan, David Alfred Degon, Thomas Alexander Dehoyos, Monique Saphonia Desir, Natalia Diek, Jolene Dodge, Dmitri Doncev, Kimiko Donohoe, Molly McNeil Dowd, Shannon Renae Dry, Sean Duma, Sarah Duprey, Joshua Duyck, Jason Edson, Lauren L. Eldred, Kathleen Eldredge, Emily Ericson, Michael J. Erikson, A. Jacob Fahrer, Seth A Fawks, Inna Federyuk, Kelly Ferencek, Joseph Ferriter, Stacey Ann Fish, Eric J. Fitzgerald, Daniel Fontaine, Mariah Fontaine, Jordan Foster, Sarah May Foster, Danielle Angelique Fournier, Anthony Francis, Heather Ashley Franklin, Kimberlee Fritz, Nicole K. Fuller, Mariah Rose Garza, Kevin Robert Gates, Scott R. Gates, Ana Ghencea, Karen L. Gilbert, Katrina Gilchrest, Ernesto Gonzalez, Patricia Ann Goodwin, Rose M. Grabowski, Kasey J. Grant, Andrew Francis Graves, Andrea D’Elia Gray, Jeffrey D Green, Melissa Green, Grace G. Gregory, Tamara Grimard, Cody R. Grybko, Beverly K. Guilbault,Meghan Hale, Thomasina R. Hall, Eric Halloran, Jeffrey Hamberg, Narjes Hamdan, Bethaney S. Hardin, Michelle Lynn Harris, Adam R. Hart, Cheavon Hatch, Rebecca Hatch, Kara M. Hayes, Gail Marie Hescock, Erica Catherine Hewes, Richard D Hicks, Tricia Ann Hill, Ian C. Hogan, Rebecca Lynn Holloway, Lynn Patricia Hollrock, Mark Hudyma, Kelandra Hurd, Ariana Marie Hyer, Katelyn M. Jablonski, Jeffrey Jasinski, Amy Lee Johnson, Analesi Johnson, Joseph Johnson, Kristian Johnson, Nils Thomas Johnson, Tara Leigh Johnson, Ian P. Joy,Samantha Kain-Call, Kenneth G. Kaiser, Daniel P. Kane Jr., Frank W Kanserstein, Christopher Karney, Elizabeth O’Leary Keefe, Jaime Keefner, Michael Kelley, Matthew R. Kelly, Gregory Kendall, Rose Jennesse Kendrick, Richard W. Kenyon, Viktoriya Khasanova, Daniel D Kieras, Paul Kieras, Brian Michael Kotowski, Tiffany J. Kozash, Wesley William Krejmas Jr., Jeffrey J. Kristek, Christopher E Krzykowski, Jonathan Adam Kusek, Breanne Lee Kydd, Tyler Kydd, Daniel J LaPan, Tammy M. LaRochelle, Melissa Jean LaValley, Niles R. LaValley, Allen Labor Jr., Daniel J. Labrie, Heather B. Lamb, Jenny Lambert, Jacob W. Lapean, Carolyn Murray, Taylor Lawson, Benjamin Lawton, Susan Leccese-DeLisle, Ji Yeon Lee, Rena Letourneau, Amy M. Lewis, Michael P. Lewis, Catherine L. Lilly, Rita Longe, Vincent Longo, Lizabeth A. Losius, Lyudmyla Lytvynchuk, Erika V. Lyvytska,Justin Whitton MacDowell, Avin Mahmood, Jeremy J. Mankowsky, Catherine R. Marcum, George Stoyanou Markov, Amanda L. Martin, Jean W. Martin, Lindsay Faye Martin, Natalia L. Masaitis, Ryan M. Mathers, Michael R. McDowell, Olivia L. McDowell, Corinne McFadden, Jill McFadden, Calvin J. McKemmie, Cameron Adam Medeiros, Alexander Meisner, Oceana S. Merrick, Zakary Mervine, Thomas Francis Messer, India Meyer, Terry Mikulskis, Casey D. Milkey, Alexander Matthew Miner, Kirstin Miner, Regina Wangui Miru, Nicholas Mizula, Eman Mohammad, Jian Mohammad, Ambria Lei Momaney, Frederick R. Momaney, Jocelyn Constance Morris, Katherine A. Morris, Mary Elise Morris, Johanna Nicholine Murphy, Julian Ray Murphy, Meghan A. Murphy, Ryan Murphy,Cherie-Lee Nash, Corey J. Navarrete, Samuel D. Nelson, Katherine Newport, Joseph Newton, Blessed M. Ngoma, Dawn Elizabeth Nims, Tyanna Normandin, Caroline Novelli,Tanya Lyn O’Connell, Dominick Obertello III, Jungbae Oh, Elysia Marie Ollari, Seth Cote Olson, Zachary A. Oppenheimer, Linda Orner, Beth Ann Ortiz, Donald L. Otis,Matthew Pacinella, Jeffrey D. Paquin Jr., Anastas “Steve” Pchelka, David Alan Perok, Haley Perret, Todd Perry, Toni Peters, Dorina Placinta, Kenneth John Polastry, Cayla May Pollard, Christy Coral Porter, Kelly A. Potts, Jane R. Pronovost,Natalya Radionov, Tabitha Recore, Alex K. Richardson, Madeleine S. Roberts, T. Joseph Roberts, Kelsey E. Rode, Ben Root, Julia E. Roy, Roy Rudolph, Teri Rutherford, Michel Ryan, Francisco J. Santiago, Wyatt Scherm-Martin, Shannon Scott-Smith, Justin Douglas Sessions, David Richard Shattuck, Mikhail Sineokov, James A. Slate, Christina L. Slocum-Wysk, Krista St. Marie, Kelly Stanton, Brandon M. Stebbins, Jamie Maria Strakose-Hagen, Ashley Taylor Strange, Eric Troy Stratton, Holly K. Stumpo, Elizabeth Sulewski, Tiffany Summers, Chelsea Swasey, Kyle James Sweeney, Matthew Szulborski,Nicole Talbot, Alyssa Tan Jia Xin, Anisabete Tavares, Nicolaas Bertrand Teensma, Joseph D. Therien, Hannah M. Therrien, Jodiann Thomas, Kristie Timberlake, Brittany N. Tirrell, Charles Tormanen, Shandi Rose Trucheon, Kyle A. Tuttle,Alexander Urkiel, Taryn B. Valdez, David P Valiquette-Lalonde, Ian Andrew Van’t Land, Jeremy Vandal, Ethan K. Vandermark, Jeff Vatore, Zachary E. Volpe, Brittany D. VonFeldt, Patricia L. Waitkus, Kelsey E. Waldron, Rebecca Brianna Walsh, Ian Walton, Jillian Ward, Timothy M. Warren, Carrie Waslaske, Vanessa J. Watroba, Joseph Harnish Weddell, Cody R. Wells, Brian Peter Werme, Austin Wheeler, Darren V. Whelan, John Wickline, Kayci Lynn Wickline, Alayna Williams, Andrea Williams, Monica L. Williams, Hannah Wilson, Patrice Crosby Wilson, Rebecca M. Wong, Katelyn A. Wood, Kristina Woods, Michael Woofenden, Adam X Wroblewski, Tenzin Yangzom, Saba Yasin, Matthew A. Yoder, James R. Young Jr., Catherine Youngen, Stephen Blayne Zacek, Amanda Zajac, Holly B. Zimmerman, Paul Victor Zononi, Zachary Zucker.

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