Onondaga Community College held its 53rd commencement ceremony Saturday, May 14 in the SRC Arena and Events Center. Nearly 1,600 students were eligible to receive their degrees.
College President Dr. Casey Crabill congratulated students on their accomplishments and lessons learned about themselves during their time at OCC. “Earning a certificate or degree is not the end of your learning. I can assure you of that. The most valuable thing you’ve achieved is that you have learned how to learn, something you’ll need to continue to do for the rest of your life to be successful. You’ve learned how to set a goal for yourself. You can manage your time and your effort and you can bring resources together to get the job done.”
Graduating student Marissa DeLand was the keynote speaker. She is a 2013 graduate of Marcellus High School who earned degrees from OCC in both Business Administration and Mathematics & Science. She will transfer to SUNY Oswego and major in business administration. She also plans to pursue a master’s degree in project management.
The College awarded two honorary degrees to Sean Kirst and Edward Kochian. Kirst is a columnist, writer and storyteller who has worked for four newspapers during his career, including 27 years with The Post-Standard. Kochian is a dedicated community member and literacy advocate who worked for Onondaga County for 41 years, 28 of those as Deputy County Executive.
Retiring faculty members Deborah G. Irwin and Engracia A. Schuster were co-Grand Marshals. Irwin is a professor in the English/Reading/Communication major who started at OCC in 1983. Schuster is a professor in the Spanish major who began teaching at the College in 1995.