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Graduates Commended For Their Diversity and Determination

May 20, 2014

Amid the beautiful stained glass and ornate wood of Fourth Avenue United Methodist Church, the Louisville Campus welcomed Sherry Conner, Mayor of the City of Shively, Kentucky, as its commencement speaker.

During her address, Mayor Conner discussed the diversity of the class, noting that twelve of the eighty-six graduates were over the age of fifty, and thirteen were born in other countries.  “I’m in awe and have the utmost respect for all of you, because this tells me that there are some very determined people in this room,” she said.

She also shared three important tips for achieving career success:  Work hard; be persistent; and come to work with a good attitude.  “Don’t stop learning.  Become a sponge and soak up all you can,” she urged the graduates.  “Think of each day as an opportunity.”

Graduates with outstanding academic achievement were given awards during the ceremony, including U.S. Navy veteran Tony Brooks, a graduate of the information systems engineering program, who graduated with high honors and was the recipient of the M.A. Smythe Award.

Tony came to National through the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) program and then transitioned to the Veterans Retraining Assistance Program (VRAP) when it was created.  He said that he liked the small class size and individual attention that he received at the school.  So much so, that he’s continuing his education at National in the cybersecurity bachelor’s degree program.  “The way things are trending right now, it’s going to be in very high demand,” he said of the cybersecurity field.

Elizabeth Head, a 2006 health information technology graduate who is working as a compliance coder at Baptist Health Hospital, was the recipient of the Alumni Hall of Achievement Award.  In addition to working at Baptist, Elizabeth works as a health information management instructor at the campus, where she shares the knowledge gained during her seven years of working in the field with her students.  “I always try to promote the college because I graduated from here, and it made me feel really good to be recognized,” she said.

While the majority of graduates who participated in the ceremony earned their degrees in-class at the Louisville Campus, Angel Miller participated in the ceremony after earning her bachelor’s degree in business administration-management through American National University Online. Angel earned two associate’s degrees from the college in 1996.  She worked in the mortgage and hospitality industries for 12 years before returning to the Louisville Campus to work as the director of student services, where she assists other students in creating successful educational journeys like her own.

Awards distributed at the ceremony were:
E. M. Coulter Award –  Jennifer Caddell
M. A. Smythe Award – Anthony Brooks
Mary P. McGurn Award – Teamber Cirwithian
Joseph E. Hurn Award – Tina Kalkbrenner
Achievement Award – Johnny Carlton
Alumni Hall of Achievement – Elizabeth Head

A-The Louisville Campus Class of 2014

B-Louisville Campus director Vincent Tinebra is shown presenting Angel Miller with her diploma.  Angel, student services director of the Louisville Campus, earned her bachelor's degree through the American National University Online program.


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tags: KY-Louisville Computer Technology: Cybersecurity - Bachelor's Degree (CSYB) Medical: Health Information Management - Associate's Degree (HIM)