College of the Rockies celebrates annual convocation

College of the Rockies President and CEO, David Walls, presided over the College’s 41st convocation ceremony on Friday, June 2.

College of the Rockies Board of Governors member Jesse Nicholas (l) along with College President David Walls (r) presented academic medals to Shelley Bergeron (2nd from left) and Darcie Musil (2nd from right).

College of the Rockies Board of Governors member Jesse Nicholas (l) along with College President David Walls (r) presented academic medals to Shelley Bergeron (2nd from left) and Darcie Musil (2nd from right). — Photo courtesy

College of the Rockies President and CEO, David Walls, presided over the College’s 41st convocation ceremony on Friday, June 2.

Student representative, Seamus Damstrom, addressed his fellow graduates before passing the microphone to David Walls.

In his address, Walls encouraged graduates to, in contrast to some world events, approach each other with kindness and a caring for our future and the future of our communities. He also urged them to use the critical thinking skills gained through their education to question assumptions and to seek out new ways to approach challenges.

On behalf of the College Board of Governors, Board member Jesse Nicholas then assisted with the presentation of academic medals.

The Lieutenant Governor’s Silver Medal, awarded to a student who has excelled in a vocational or career program and who contributed in a positive way to life at the College, was awarded to Darcie Musil. Darcie completed the Health Care Assistant program – a career choice inspired from helping to care for her mother-in-law who had suffered a stroke. She is currently working in her field at an assisted living facility in her hometown of Sparwood.

Shelley Bergeron was the recipient of the Governor General’s Academic Medal Collegiate Bronze - considered to be the greatest honour that can be bestowed upon a graduate of a two-year program. It is awarded to the student who has achieved the highest academic standing upon graduating from a two-year diploma or associate degree program. Shelley completed her Associate of Arts degree at the College and will be continuing her education at UBC in September, pursuing her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology degree with plans of eventually earning a Master’s degree in Counselling Psychology.

The President’s Award of Excellence is made possible through donations from College staff, faculty and management and is presented to a first- or second-year student, planning to complete a four-year degree at the College or elsewhere, who has achieved the highest cumulative grade-point-average. This year the award went to Business Administration - Accounting program graduate Monica Blackmore. Monica plans to continue her education at the University of Lethbridge and to then complete her CPA designation.

“It was a great thrill to recognize these three worthy recipients,” says Walls. “I am proud of each and every one of our graduates and of the terrific team we have in place at the College that played a part in their success stories.”

In addition to the numerous College credentials presented, for the first time, graduates of the four-year Bachelor of Education degree, held at the College in partnership with the University of Victoria, were recognized at the College’s ceremony. UVIC’s Associate Dean of Undergraduate Programs in the Faculty of Education, Dr. James Nahachewsky, travelled from Victoria to help to celebrate the achievements of these students.

To date, College of the Rockies has awarded 555 certificates, diplomas and/or degrees to students in the 2016/17 academic year with the potential for 193 additional credentials being awarded as more programs wrap up in June. One hundred fifty three graduates were able to attend Friday’s ceremony.

Photographs of the graduation ceremony can be found on the College’s Facebook page: facebook.com/COTR1.

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