As published in the Recorder, June 6, 2016
GREENFIELD — Underneath a white tent on the Greenfield Community College campus, a full audience and nearly 400 graduates listened to student speaker Laura DiLuzio tell her story as a mother attending GCC to make a better life for herself and her daughter.
DiLuzio had tried going to college a few times before GCC, and never felt the sense of belonging that she was searching for. But in 2010, something changed for DiLuzio, when her daughter Vivian was born.
“I wanted to model for my daughter the way people deserve to be treated and loved,” she said. Such a desire to be a model for Vivian led her to GCC.
DiLuzio remembers the terror she felt, thinking back to her first day of classes.
“Tears kept welling up in my eyes and I was shaking,” she said, and remembers thinking, “‘What business did I have, being in this class?’”
But looking back now, DiLuzio said she has realized “I am stronger and more capable than what I gave myself credit for.” And GCC has been fundamental to her growth, she said as she thanked the faculty.
“You have changed my life and you have changed the life of my daughter,” she said.
DiLuzio also spoke of the tremendous sense of community she felt as a student at GCC.
“This college makes an effort to get to know each and every student. At GCC, you’re a person, not a number,” she said. “Now I understand the meaning of ‘You get out of something what you put into it’ … (But) what I gave is nothing compared to what I received: a community, a family and a place where I belonged.”
GCC President Robert Pura also spoke, providing the graduates with three pieces of advice to help guide them.
First, he encouraged graduates not to see the world and its issues as being merely black and white.
“There is a depth, richness and complexity to society’s challenges — and to life — that you must embrace and understand in order to lead us to a better tomorrow,” he said.
Secondly, he asked graduates to “take control of … the use of your technology … so that the illusion of human relationships found in your technology does not reshape you or undermine your very real human needs for relationships.”
“Remember that happiness and the human experience are derived from relationships with people, not iThings,” Pura said.
And, lastly, Pura told graduates to find a healthy balance between work and their personal lives.
“We all have work to do, and that work is to ensure that work does not become life itself,” he said.
Though life will now take the graduates away from the campus, they won’t forget GCC, DiLuzio said.
“I will never truly leave GCC, just as GCC will never leave me.”
Accounting, Dustin Orcutt; Art Department “Medici” Award, Angelena Delaney; Business and Information Technology, Rhamesses Diaz-Santiago and Laura DiLuzio; Criminal Justice, Tameka Page; Drama Award, Fiona Wilson; Liberal Arts/Dance, Chelsea Lowell and Erin Sawicki; Early Childhood Education, Melissa Arial; Liberal Arts/English, Rachel Carkhuff; International Student Scholastic Achievement Award, Elena Naryzhnaya; Liberal Arts/ Music, Lysha Smith; Liberal Arts/Social Sciences, Mikaela Hurd and Nath Ne; Nursing: Excellence in Nursing Care, Katelyn Wood; Nursing Academic Excellence, Leah Leviton; Donald Oberacker Liberal Arts/Science, Henry Mizrahi; Liberal Arts, Elena Naryzhnaya; The Charles Green Award, Gabriel Massa
Melanie E. Abercrombie, Jodi Abramowitz, Markie Adamski, Yulia Agapov, Anthony M. Ahearn, Emran Aleem, Alissa Ames, Alice Amidon, Heather M. D. Anderson,Antonio James Andreas, Randy Kenneth Andrews, Tylar Lynn Archambault, Melissa Jean Arial, Brendan Donovan Asselin, Daniel Charles Back, Cheryl A. Baker, Joanne E. Baker, Megan Balmos, Casey Lucille Banning, Aaron J. Banville, Rylan Wade Baronas, Yauheni N. Barun, Sophie Baskowski, Christopher Battista, Karen Elizabeth Bayne, Rachael Beard, Haley Jean Beaudet, Dominique Beausoleil, Candace R. Bellville, Judith E. Bennett, Tyler B. Blais, Travis Block, Veniamin A. Bocharnikov, Lauren M. Bock, Liana Boisclair, Emily Bolduc, Johanna D. Bourgeois, Christina I. Bridges, Virginia E. Bromberg, Robyn Brunelle, Anatoliy N. Bublik, Eduard Bublik, Kathryn Rose Burke, Leslie Rose Calkins, Barrie Gordon Cameron, Ervin J. Cameron, Rachel Carkhuff, Robert Reeves Catlin, Jessica L. Champney, Zoe K. Cheek, Ariel A. Cheney, Christina M. Chin, Maria Christenson, Ashley E. Chumbley, Audrey Renee Clark, Annie Lane Clarke, Leonard S. Cocco, Ciji A. Cody, Kristy Rose Cominoli, Shannon Maureen Connolly, Theresa M. Conway, Lorna Cook, Samantha A. Cornish, Tatiana Covalenco, Greta Currie, Cynthia Ann Curtis, Linda L. Cusack, Shannon N. Cutter, Emilie Cycz, Brian Dannemiller, Kellie Davis, Patrick J. Davis, Michele A. DeTour, Angelena Delaney, Paul Delisle, Benjamin Delnero, Isaac Beowulf Di Geronimo, Laura DiLuzio, Rhamsses Diaz-Santiago, Melissa Dion, Alexandra Dizenzo, Ceara Dolhenty, Phurbu Dolma, Melanie Jean Donaldson, Kathleen Dower, Bethany L. Drake, Kayla Marie Drumgool, Shelby Ross DuCharme, Karyn E. Dufresne, Curtis Robert Edward Dunbar, Sandra Lea Duprey, Alexandra Durant, Stacy Lee Dybas, Julie Dzialo, Hannah Eisenstein, Brandi Elwell, Anthony Emanuelli, Brittany Emerson, Emily H. Emmons, Shawn D. Englehardt, Dylan Farrick, Edward Fath, Peter Fath, Sherdyl Fernandez-Aubert, Richard Fields IV, Michael Fillion, Ashley Elizabeth Fisher, Kathleen M. Fitzgerald, Erin M. Fitzpatrick, Hannah Lei Fitzsimmons, Roxanne Fletcher, Emily Anne Franklin, Joshua Edward Freund, Abbie Fydenkevez, Brice D. Gagnon, Wioletta Gavrilova, Anthony G. Geryk, Cheryl Gingras, Lia Janika Gips, Fernando Gonzalez, Isaac Seth Gonzalez, Ambrosia V. Gooden, Laurel Sheerman Goodhind, Brian A. Goodridge, Jasmine Goodspeed, Sylena Gougeon, Naomi Graether, Shayna E. Graham, Brendon William Gray, Allison Green, Nathaniel Kimball Green Jr., Richard Greene, Molly A. Greening, Robert William Grenier, Brianna M. Grover, Jessi Marie Grover, Elizabeth Grunewald, Kellie Singley Grybko, April M. Guillemette, Monica T. Guzik, Samira Ruth Haddad, Jeannine L. Haendiges, Meaghan A. Handley, Jennifer Hannum, Lynn Harlow, Drew Hastings, Eliza R. Henderson, Marissa Herman, Davis Hodges-Hall, Jason Hodgkins, Thomas Hodsdon, Holly Holloway, Serena Holmes, Alexander A. Honsinger, Jake Q. Hooker, Michael A. Horton, Joseph Hughes, Mikaela Hurd, Samuel Indenbaum, Jenna R. Izer, Katelyn M. Jablonski, Emily Lauren Jillson, Kristian Johnson, Bonnie Jean Augusta Johnson, Johnathan Jubb, Henry Emmett Kahan, Zachary D. Kareta, Kirandip Kaur, James T. Kearney IV, Eileen Keegan, Jessica Michele Kelly, Joshua Howe Kennedy, Darien Marley Kenny, Joseph E. Kerlin-Smith, Chanthy Khom, Phu Minh Kien, William Kimball, Richard Anthony King, John Klopfer, Emma Louise Pearl Knight, Dmitriy Komerzan, Norma J. Kostek, Gabrielle Krause, Marilyn Krause, Alia Kusmaul, Joseph W. LaClaire, Erika T. LaForme, Daniel LaPan, Joseph Paul Lacourse, Khunga Lama, Zion Lea, Brendan A. Ledoyt, Changgong Lee, Catherine Lefebvre, Emma Lehan, David C. Lepore, Cooper B. Lerner, Evan J. Lesenski, Leah I. Leviton, Scott W. Lewis, Geng Lin, Kristin Marie Lively, Taylor Elizabeth Lively ,Brian Llewelyn, Kelsey Locke, Samuel Lord, Scott Loughlin, Chelsea Rachelle Lowell, Laura Maher-Patenaude, Joshua Malam, Connor Francis Maloney, Bounphone Manuthong, Sarah Lynn Marshall, Shannon Mei Martineau, Gabriel Eduardo “Ted” Massa,William D. Matica, Jennifer Maybar, Susan Waite McAllister, Leonard McDonald, Holly Elizabeth McElligott, Colin William McGahan, William John McGuirk, Rhyanna Grace Sophia McLeester, Jacqueline McMillan, Cullen J. McLarty, Breanna L. Miller, Joshua Ryan Miller, Samantha M. Milton, Brittany Miner, Christopher Miner, Scott J. Miner, Kyle V. Mitchell, Henry Mizrahi, Katrina Morin, Zachary Louis Morin, Johanna N. Murphy, Ryan M. Murphy, Elena V. Naryzhnaya, Nath Ne, Jacob Thomas Niquette, Jennifer M. Novak, Elizabeth O’Loughlin, Adam O’Neil, Dustin A. Orcutt, Andrew A. Orluk, Quincy Lee Jose Ortiz, Melissa Ann Osborne, Tameka Leigh Page, Maria Paiva, Scott Eugene Palmer,Ryan Jon Partridge, Seamus Byron Passa, Alyssa Sue Patterson, Dawn Payant, Jeanette Perra, Anyes B. Perreault, Brian Perreault, Andrew Peters, Corrinne Peters, Dokoi Phathsoungneune, Adrienne Phelps, Tyler Marc Pickunka, Meagan Pike, Dovrah Bess Plotkin, Keith R. Plunske, Rebecca I. Pollica, Nicholas Popowich, Liam Porter, Claudimae Pratt, Mark Pribyshchuk, Rachael M. Pride, Zane Alexander Provost, Claire Quaassdorff, Eileen M. Reardon, Felicia Renfrew, June Elizabeth Rice, Kaitlan Jeannette Rice, Mary L. Rice, Noah Richardson, Dean Riel, Peter Benjamin Roberts, Jared William Robinson, Joshua B. Rode, Matthew M. Rogowski, Steven M. Ronhave, Andrea J.Ronkese, Christopher Rose, Bryant P. Rother, Alora Rovatti, Bridget Molly Rowan, Scott Evan Rowe, Erin M. Ruff, Katerina Sankova, Sandra L. Saravia, Evan Sargent, Erin V. Sawicki, Brian Schindler, Joseph William Carson Serna, Phillip Sherwood-Berndt, Jonathan E. Shina, Bradley Michael Shulda, Abigail L. Simmons, Nicole Simonelli, Ashley Marie Slicer, Lysha Smith, Ian W. Snover, Anna B. Snow, Jessica Sojka, Nicole Stultz, Tracy Lynn Styles, Yevgeniy Stytsenko, Glenn Thomas Sullivan, Alex Suydam, Jeremy Michael Tan, Alexander Thacker, Kenneth Thomas, Niels J. Thomsen, Truong Thanh Tran, Dawa Tsering, Natalia Turcan, Charles Turner, Emily Tuthill, Brittany E. Tuttle, Eugenio Uriona, Olivia Ruth Van Cott, Jennifer Vecellio ,Sherrilyn VonSchmidt, Susan Marie Voss, Adrienne Walker, Sarah E. Wallitis, Kenneth Ward, Samantha M.Ward, Debra E. Warner, Christopher Waters, Micah L. Watson, Kai Webler, Courtney Wells, Samantha E. Wessman, Lazarus White, Fiona Allis Wilson, Leah Anne Wingler, Ashley Dianne Witherspoon, James R. Witmer II, Katelyn A. Wood, Noreen F.Woodruff, Jared Dale Woods, Alicia Beronica Wrisley, Eliah O. Young, Dwight D. Zeager, Bethany Zera, Alicia H. Zraunig, Zachary Zucker, Deborah L. Zukowski.
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