On Thursday, May 30th, Greenfield Community College (GCC) inaugurated it’s 10th President, Dr. Yves Salomon-Fernández. In attendance were fellow college presidents, members of the legislative delegation, members of the Board of Trustees and GCC’s Foundation, members of the community, family, and friends.
Professor Charlotte Gifford of the World Languages Department welcomed guests to the ceremony and introduced the first speaker of the afternoon, Robert Cohn, Chair of the GCC Board of Trustees. Several additional speakers joined Trustee Cohn in offering their salutations, insights, and warm wishes, including:
- Dr. Patricia Marshall, Deputy Commissioner for Academic Affairs & Student Success at the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education
- State Representative Paul Mark, 2nd Berkshire/Franklin District
- Leigh Rae, President of the GCC Foundation Board of Directors
- Dr. Robert Pura, retired GCC President
- Stewart “Buz” Eisenberg, J.D., GCC Faculty Emeritus
- Amy Holich Moscaritolo, GCC Alumna and member of the GCC Foundation Board of Directors
- Carrie Hale, graduating student and GCC Student Trustee
- State Representative Nike Elugardo, 15th Suffolk/Norfolk District
- Jennifer Aradhya, Vice President of Marketing & Programs at the Greater Lowell Community Foundation
Interwoven throughout all the speeches was the importance that GCC plays in preparing students for the future, and the significance of GCC in the community.
Patricia Marshall, Ph.D., Deputy Commissioner for Academic Affairs & Student Success at the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education was among the first to speak to a crowded tent honoring GCC’s newest President. “These are seismic shifts in our [higher education] landscape. Yet this is the moment we find ourselves in – and if we choose to seize this moment, the challenges we face can lead us to strengthen our mission. That’s why the experience and optimism of Yves Salomon-Fernández is cause for celebration.”
“Many of you have personal experience with GCC and its positive impact. I certainly do. GCC saw the possibility in my daughter when she did not see it in herself, and this made all the difference for her future,” shared GCC Foundation Board President, Leigh Rae.
Following the presentation of the Presidential Medallion, President Salomon-Fernández delivered the Presidential Address and offered her vision for the college’s future in the landscape of change and innovation. “At GCC, we are preparing our graduates to steward and lead with courage and conviction. We are preparing them to contribute to discoveries in science, technology, to contribute to better race relations in our country, to help close race-based, gender-based, and income-based inequalities.”
GCC’s motto is, “You belong here.” On May 30th, that’s the very spirit with which Yves Salmon-Fernández was officially inaugurated into office.
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