YC Class of 2011

Senator Greg Adams delivers commencement address

Renee Willard - Dean's Award
It was a beautiful Saturday morning as family and friends gathered in the York City Auditorium to witness the York College class of 2011 receive their bachelor's degrees.

Addressing this year's graduates was Senator Greg Adams of York. Senator Adams is currently serving his second term in the Nebraska State Legislature, representing the 24th District. He serves as chair of the legislature's Education Committee, serves on the legislature's Revenue Committee, the Committee on Committees, the Midwestern Higher Education Commission, Education Commission of the States, and the Nebraska Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research Committee.

Senator Greg AdamsSenator Adams challenged graduates to strive for respect and to use integrity in the way they model their life. "If you make a promise, hold to it. Say what you're going to do and do it."

Adams pointed out to graduates that caring for others would earn them respect. He quoted Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel, “The epitome of evil is indifference. The opposite of love is not hate; it’s ‘I don’t care.’ The opposite of life is not death; it is not caring.”

The Senator’s comments were brief but to the point and he concluded by telling the graduating seniors that they had the respect of everyone in the auditorium. “You’ve earned it. You can lose it in a minute. Don’t let that happen.”

At the conclusion of the commencement address, Dr. L. Ray Miller, Vice President for Academic Affairs, made the Dean’s Award presentation to honor an outstanding senior. The award is the highest academic honor given by the faculty to a graduate whose involvement and leadership are matched by their high academic success. This year's recipient was Renee Willard of Golden, Colorado, who graduated with a perfect 4.0 in Elementary Education.

Deb CollinsMiller then presented the Dale R. Larsen Teacher of Achievement Award posthumously to Dr. Roger Collins (YC class of 1973). Recipients of the award are nominated by other faculty members and are considered on the basis of teaching, service, spiritual commitment, attitude, and dedication to York College as demonstrated in activities outside the classroom. Dr. Collins, who chaired York College’s Business Department, passed away unexpectedly on October 25, 2010, after suffering a heart attack while jogging. He was in his 29th year of service to the college. His wife Deb Collins accepted the award on his behalf.  

At the conclusion of these honors, President Eckman shook each graduate's hand as he presented them with their earned diploma. Seniors were then hooded by a relative or close friend. The color of the hoods represents the institution conferring the degrees as well as signifies the area of study to which the degree pertains.

2011 Graduates: Leah Atwell**, Landon Bailey, Michael Becker, Matthew Berru, Jeremy Bjelland, Nick Caravelli, Jordan Carney**, Michael Carney**, Cory Clark*, Mitch Clay, Daniel Costanza**, Isaiah Davis**, Amanda Deal*, Corin Derrick, Sarah Eggar*, Heidy Estrada, Julia Garcia, Abigail Goodner***, Royce Grimes, Natasha Hackett**, Jason  Hernandez, Robin Hinton*, Cynthia Hunt**, Brian Keller, Martha Kinyon*, Clarissa Krekel, Kayla Lawrence**, Joseph Leinen, Hilary Mekelburg, Joshua Melvin**, Brenda Perry***, Marissa Petrilli, Tammy Phan**, Sarabeth Robison**, Aubrey Rush***, Tamara Sanchez**, Kathy Sanner*, Heath Schmalzried, Jennifer Schutt, Kelci Scott***, Meghan Shruk**, Kaitlin Spanel*, Brent Stahl**, Cailin Stahl***, Corey Standerfer, Josh Stewart*, James Tidei**, Carl Twisselman, Jillyan Vance, Justin Ward*, London Ward***, Matthew Ward**, Renee Willard***, Jessica Wilson, Mindy Witt**

*Cum Laude - GPA of 3.40 or higher
**Magna Cum Laude - GPA of 3.60 or higher
***Summa Cum Laude - GPA of 3.85 or higher

graduation pics

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