WSCC graduation

DOUG LOYER Special to the Times President of Washington State Community College, Dr. Vicky Wood, hands a graduate her diploma.

Washington State Community College held its annual commencement ceremonies Saturday in Graham Auditorium on the WSCC campus in Marietta. The graduates, along with their families and friends, celebrated their hard work, achievements and shared in the excitement about entering the next phase of their lives.

Washington State prides itself by making available educational opportunities and addressing the workforce needs in our community by offering associate degrees and certificates in many areas including Arts & Sciences, Public Service, Business, Engineering, Health Sciences and Industrial Technologies.

“This is my first commencement here and I’m extremely excited,” said Dr. Vicky Wood, President of Washington State Community College. “This is the best day of the year because we get to see all of the work that the faculty and staff have put into educating the students. It’s exciting helping the students complete their educational goals and to send them off on their careers.”

Wood also proudly stated that many of the graduates are already employed. She said that speaks very well of the levels of programs that WSCC offers.

The graduates have put in the hard work and are now seeing the rewards.

“This is a culmination of the students’ efforts,” commented Dr. Mark Nutter, Vice President for Academic Affairs. “Today, we’re celebrating their successes and their futures.”

Andy Thompson, the 95th District Ohio State Representative, was this year’s WSCC commencement speaker.

“Each student has a great story and each family shares in it,” stated Thompson. “I’ve been a big supporter of Washington State in the legislature because I realize just how instrumental it’s been to southeastern Ohio. Some are nervous and some are excited, but fundamentally, this is a happy time for the graduates.”

The message Thompson had for them was to build their lives and careers on a solid foundation, know what their passion is, be persistent, have courage, have faith and always realize how important family is.

One of the student speakers Saturday was Jacob Wagner who received his Accounting Technology degree. His speech was about leadership and stepping up to be a role model.

Wagner has a double major. He will return next fall to finish his business management degree. After that, Wagner plans to transfer to Marietta College to get a public accounting bachelors degree. His goal is to be a CPA. This summer he will serve an internship at Tenney and Associates.

“All of us are very excited to have Jacob for an internship,” commented David Tenney, who is also on the WSCC Board of Trustees.

“Jacob is a local student who is interested in being a professional and staying in the Mid-Ohio Valley,” said Tenney. “We’re really excited for him.”

Marvin Meade of Vincent received his corrections degree during Saturday’s ceremony.

“It was fun and a lot of hard work. This is my second associates degree here,” said Meade. “Last year, I got my law enforcement degree. Next year I’ll have my bachelors degree. I just keep working and with the support of my family I’ll be able to do it.”

“I’m excited to graduate today,” expressed Paiten Wotring of Little Hocking who earned an Associate Degree of Individualized Studies.

Wotring shared that she plans to go to WVU-P to get a bachelors degree so she can teach middle school students. She especially would like to teach either fourth or fifth grades.

“It feels good to graduate today,” said Madison Cooper of Belpre who received her Liberal Arts Degree. Cooper shared that she plans to go to Ohio University to study Psychology.