Bainbridge State College holds spring commencement

Published 7:07 pm Tuesday, May 10, 2016

By Susanne Reynolds

Special to The Post-Searchlight

On Saturday, April 30, the 42nd Bainbridge State College Commencement exercises were held at the Student Wellness Center, with 348 students earning diplomas.

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Pomp and Circumstance was played by the Tallahassee Pipe Band as the graduates entered the Student Wellness Center.

This year’s mace was carried by Ridge Harper in memory of Dr. Eric Dueno, a respected member of the Bainbridge State College faculty who passed away suddenly during the fall term.

Dr. David Nelson, Associate Professor of History, addressed the students on behalf of the faculty.

He said, “Graduation is a bittersweet time for faculty. I think about the students who will never be in my class or go on class trips again. Once you go out and get jobs or go back to get a degree and start your lives, don’t be afraid to shoot us an email or stop by the office. On behalf of the Bainbridge State College faculty, congratulations, good job and good luck.”

Representing the graduating class of 2016, Student Government Association President, Dewayne Gurley spoke about the major milestone he and his class were marking on that day.

“Today we are not receiving these degrees, certificates and diplomas for ourselves—but for our parents, family and friends, and last but not least, those unseen eyes of someone who is always learning from us without us knowing it,” said Gurley. “On behalf of the students here at Bainbridge State College, I would like to thank the administration, faculty, staff, tutors, sanitary specialists, donors and everyone else who has been a great assistance to me and my fellow graduates throughout our college experience here at the wonderful Bainbridge State College.”

A special alumnus and community professional addressed the graduates. Dr. Lisa Martin shared her Bainbridge State College experience.

She said, “I don’t remember everything I learned in class, but what I do remember is every professor and classroom I took while at Bainbridge College. Our paths are very similar in that we all started here at Bainbridge State College. I’ll be the first to tell you, I was never anything spectacular. I was never the top person in my class. I did not win all the awards, but I was dedicated and I knew what I wanted to accomplish.

We are constantly asked while growing up what do we want to be—and today, many of you have become that person or you are on the path to becoming that person.

I hope you will look back and remember all the great times here. So remember that every student has great potential. You will do great things—and I could not be prouder of you all.”

Dr. Rodney Carr, Vice President for Academic & Student Affairs, recognized the faculty and staff, along with the 2016 Honor Graduates.

“I have the honor of standing here on behalf of the faculty that change the lives of our students on a daily basis. They are not only experts in their fields, but also take pride in helping each individual students achieve his or her goals,” he said. “Our faculty understands that there is much more to an education than just learning the facts in a textbook. Thank you for your dedication to educating the whole person—to helping each student strengthen his or her talents and overcome his or her challenges. And thank you to our staff who are committed to our students’ success and the countless hours spent making a difference in a student’s life.”

Students graduating with honors must have maintained a minimum B+ grade point average at Bainbridge State College.

Dr. David Nelson presented the Class of 2016.

“They have completed all the necessary requirements for their respective degrees and certificates, and we, as a faculty, are proud of them and eager to see the different they will make in the future,” he said.