College of the Rockies holds expanded Commencement Ceremony

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Paul Vogt, College of the Rockies President (left) and Randal Macnair, Board of Governors Chair (right) applaud Carson Thompson for earning the President’s Award of Excellence at the 2022 Commencement Ceremony.

Previous graduates from 2020 and 2021 were invited to participate

College of the Rockies’ 46th annual Convocation Ceremony was held on Friday, June 10, with some notable changes.

“We were thrilled to invite graduates from 2020 and 2021 who missed out on an in-person ceremony due to the pandemic to join us at this year’s ceremony and delighted that more than 60 were able to participate,” said Robin Hicks, Vice President Academic and Applied Research. “This year’s Convocation Ceremony was held at Western Financial Place, where we had plenty of space to celebrate all of our graduates from the past three years and comfortably accommodate all of our guests. It was a special day for everyone involved.”

The graduates entered the Ceremony to an honour drum performed by the Numa Ka-Kin Drum Group, followed by the singing of O Canada by Robin Sudo.

Robin Hicks acted as Ceremony Host and introduced Nasu?kin Joe Pierre from the Aq’am community to say some opening words. Student representative Michelle Davis, a South African native and Criminal and Social Justice certificate earner, spoke next.

College President Paul Vogt congratulated graduates for achieving a significant milestone under exceptional circumstances before assuring them that the perseverance and adaptability they required to graduate will leave them well prepared to handle just about anything their careers or lives throw at them.

Randal Macnair, Chair of College of the Rockies’ Board of Governors, joined President Vogt on stage to present three academic awards to deserving students.

The Lieutenant Governor’s Silver Medal is awarded to a student from a vocational or career program who has excelled in his or her studies and contributed in a positive way to the College or their community. This award was presented to Claire Wensveen, a graduate from the Educational Assistant program. Wensveen navigated multiple education systems with a learning disability herself and believes as an Education Assistant she can help build a more inclusive future for all.

Eilish Cox was presented with the Governor General’s Medal Collegiate Bronze, a Medal awarded to the student who has achieved the highest academic standing upon graduation from a two-year diploma or associate degree program. It is the greatest honour that can be bestowed upon a student at this level. Cox graduated from the Criminal and Social Justice diploma program and plans to attend Acadia University in Nova Scotia next fall, to obtain a Bachelor of Science in Nutrition.

The final award was the President’s Award of Excellence.  Made possible through donations from staff, faculty, and management, this Award is presented to a first- or second-year student who has taken a full course load and has achieved the highest cumulative GPA. The recipient must be continuing at the College in a degree program or transferring to another institution to complete a degree. The recipient also receives a $2500 award from the College. This year’s recipient, Carson Thompson, graduated with an Engineering certificate and hopes one day to become a professional mechanical engineer. In the fall, he plans to transfer to the University of British Columbia’s Okanagan campus and complete a Bachelor of Applied Science.

With more than 1,100 guests in the audience cheering them on, 250 graduates then crossed the stage, one-by-one to receive their credential. Though not all graduates were able to attend, 734 credentials will be awarded by the College for 2022.

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About College of the Rockies

For more than 45 years, College of the Rockies has provided post-secondary education that meets the needs and aspirations of the people, industry, and businesses of our region. Each year, we welcome more than 10,000 full-time and part-time students into a full range of programs, including: skilled trades, university studies, adult upgrading, early childhood education, health and human services, business, office administration, tourism, hospitality, recreation, fire services, continuing education, and contract training. Through smaller class sizes, highly personalized instruction and dedicated support services, our students are primed to succeed in the job market, or in the next stage of their academic journey.

Media Contact:
Heather Jackson
Manager, Communications and Marketing
College of the Rockies