Northeast State celebrates 793 spring graduates

Published 11:33 am Wednesday, May 10, 2023

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Special guest Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee celebrated commencement Tuesday with Northeast State Community College as it awarded degrees and certificates to 793 graduates.
The governor spoke during the afternoon ceremony honoring graduates in the Mathematics and Technologies divisions.
“My belief and my prayer and my admonition for you today is to stop and appreciate what you have done and the spot you have put yourself in and that you will find great hope for the days ahead,” Gov. Lee said. “It’s my tremendous honor to be governor of this state because of people like you who make this state greater one step at a time.”
Gov. Lee praised the students for completing their academic journey at Northeast State and called on them to make a difference at work, in their communities, and in the state.
“Tennessee is one of the most attractive places in America to live,” Lee said. “People come here to visit, people come here to live, people bring their companies here, and that means this state needs you.”
Northeast State graduates earned 14 academic certificates; 280 technical certificates; 270 associate of applied science degrees; 25 associate of arts degrees; 24 associate of science in teaching degrees, and 403 associate of science degrees.
The graduates included 72 area high school dual enrollment students. Thirty-nine students completed an associate of science degree concurrently with their high school diplomas, while the remaining 33 earned academic certificates.
The College awarded degrees and certificates to 543 students in the fall of 2022, bringing its 2022-2023 graduate total to 1,336.
A total of 112 students graduated cum laude (grade point average, 3.50-3.74); 76 magna cum laude (grade point average, 3.75-3.89), and 83 students graduated summa cum laude (grade point average, 3.89-4.0).
“The hallmark of a community college is to produce graduates who live and work in our region,” said Northeast State President Jeff McCord. “Our region needs your talent – not only in our region but in our state and our country. We are in a talent crisis. We have jobs, but we don’t have people with the skills to do those jobs. There is a skills gap and a people gap that’s impacting our region and our economy. You have made the decision to step into that gap. Thank you, and we cheer for your willingness to do that.”
The College conducted three ceremonies at the Ballad Health Center for the Performing Arts on the Blountville campus. Commencement for the Behavioral and Social Science and Humanities divisions was held at 10 a.m., Health Professions and Science at noon, and Mathematics and Technologies at 2 p.m.
Also, graduating students Kylie Harrison, Elizabeth Lowe, Larra Fouch, and Brookley Meadows served as commencement speakers.
Harrison is from Mount Carmel with majors in Communication Studies, Political Science, and Sociology; Lowe is from Elizabethton with a major in Pre-Radiography; Fouch is from Kingsport with a University Parallel major; and Meadows is from Bristol with majors in Accounting and Business Administration.
“We are all on this journey together,” Harrison told her fellow graduates. “We may all have different paths, but we’re all on the same journey, and we’re all trying to get to the same place, and that’s to succeed with the goals we all have. College is hard. We all know that, but we all got here. We’ve already taken that first step, and I want to encourage you to keep going. Sometimes things seem impossible, the world seems big, and sometimes we think we’re very small within it, but your world is as big as you make it.”

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