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Davidson-Davie Graduates Over 1,000; Record Numbers Cross the Stage

Davidson-Davie Graduates Over 1,000; Record Numbers Cross the Stage

May 11, 2023 – Davidson-Davie Community College today celebrated the accomplishments of 1,016 graduates who earned a collective total of 1,286 credentials – including 586 associate degrees, 140 diplomas, and 560 certificates. Over 100 high school students got a head start on college by pursuing transfer pathways through the Career & College Promise program.

And despite the fact that not all graduates choose to participate in the actual graduation-day ceremonies – likely due to work and family obligations, or because they participated in smaller departmental ceremonies – a record number joined their classmates this year to celebrate their accomplishments in person, crossing the grand outdoor stage on the college’s Davidson Campus.

Graduate walks across stage

“There’s nothing better than celebrating our graduates while also welcoming family, friends, and community members to campus,” said Dr. Susan Burleson, executive vice president for academic and student affairs. “Over 4,000 people were on our campus today, and we were able to share with them what our faculty and staff already know – whether graduate, friend and family, or future student, you will always have a home at Davidson-Davie Community College.” An additional 1,000 people from six countries watched the college’s live stream at DavidsonDavie.edu/graduation.

Chairman of the Board of Trustees Kevin Firquin shared with the audience why everyone should be proud to be part of Davidson-Davie. “Did you know that this college is the only North Carolina community college to earn an ‘Above Average’ or ‘Excellence’ level on all seven measures that the state uses to analyze performance?” he asked. “I am so proud to be part of the top college in the state, and I hope all of you here – whether graduate, family, employee, or community member – appreciate what it means to be associated with this college and have it in our community.”

Carol Boice, president of the student government association, built on the college’s “Storm” moniker and encouraged graduates to storm forward through the difficult parts of life, as she did in the years leading up to her decision to enroll at Davidson-Davie. “I’m grateful that I was able to continue forward until I could see the sunlight on the other side,” she told her classmates. “I hope that you will see yourself as I see you all now in this moment,” she added. “Proud, strong, brave, having overcome your own storms to get to this very moment.”

Boice also was recognized during graduation for being one of eight winners out of 2,700 applicants for the prestigious Guistwhite Scholarship through the national Phi Theta Kappa organization.

Graduation ceremony from behind the perspective of the graduates caps.

Other student awards announced during graduation included the Academic Excellence Award, a state-level honor that went to graduate Stephanie Hernandez, who earned her associate in applied science degree in pharmacy technology. Graduation scholarships were awarded to Sara Woolsey for the Robert Bruce Smith, Jr. Student Success Scholarship; Jaden Koonts for the Mountcastle Insurance Student Success Scholarship; Sarah Emerson for the Paula Mathews Turlington Student Success Scholarship; Rebecca Mills for the Mary E. Rittling Student Success Scholarship; Carol Boice for the Eloise S. Bates Memorial Achievement scholarship; Sara Gifford for the Betty G. Bunce Memorial Achievement Scholarship; Brandon Snipes for the Applied Sciences/Skilled Trades Student Achievement Scholarship; and Kolton Varney for the Applied Sciences/Skilled Trades Scholarship.

Davidson-Davie Community College (www.DavidsonDavie.edu), which incorporated Davie County into its name in 2021, is a fully accredited, multi-campus college where students of all ages and backgrounds pursue academic and career-focused education in order to build successful futures. As one of 58 institutions within the North Carolina Community College System, Davidson-Davie offers more than 40 degree and professional certificate programs, as well as affordable college-credit coursework to students who plan to transfer to four-year schools. With a mission to serve the changing needs of students competing in a global environment, Davidson-Davie is committed to quality education, innovative and equitable learning experiences, training, and support across a wide range of 21st-century career fields.

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Jenny Varner
Vice President, External Affairs