Student Stories

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MWCC student Bella Ballin, second from left, is among this year’s recipients of the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education’s prestigious Christian A. Herter Memorial Scholarship. Pictured with her at the May 28 ceremony at the Massachusetts Statehouse, from left, Lea Ann Scales, MWCC Vice President of External Affairs, Communications and K-12 Partnerships, Natalie Mercier, director of MWCC’s Pathways Early College Innovation School and Early College Experience programs, and DHE Commissioner Richard Freeland.

Bella Ballin, a high school junior enrolled in the Pathways Early College Innovation School at Mount Wachusett Community College, is among the 25 recipients of this year’s prestigious Christian A. Herter Memorial Scholarship.

The award, presented by the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education during a ceremony at the Statehouse on May 28, covers 50 percent of recipients’ expenses toward a bachelor’s degree at the public or private college or university of their choice.

“It really is a great honor,” said Ballin, a Worcester resident. “With this scholarship, many new opportunities are opening up for me that before were completely out of my range. I’m still looking for my niche, though I know I’m more oriented toward the STEM fields.”

As a dual enrollment student at MWCC, Ballin is majoring in Liberal Arts and Sciences with a concentration in chemistry and plans to continue studying science at a four year school after graduation. She said she enjoyed high school, but wanted to tap into the opportunities provided through the Pathways school, including the cost of tuition and fees covered through school choice funding. Pathways students simultaneously earn their high school diploma and a transferrable associate degree.

“The Pathways Early College Innovation School provides highly motivated and academically successful students, like Bella, the opportunity to start their college experience early while being engaged in a comprehensive support system that develops academic and social skills,” said Pathways Director Natalie Mercier. “Bella is a dedicated and hardworking student who exemplifies the mission of our program. We’re very proud of her.”

The Herter scholarship program provides educational opportunities to students who demonstrate profound personal strength and academic promise and desire to pursue postsecondary education. The program was established in 1972 by the Massachusetts State Legislature in honor of Herter, who served as the 59th governor of Massachusetts from 1953 to 1957 and as U.S. Secretary of State from 1959 to 1961.

 

 

 

 

 

MWCC Pathways & Gateway grads 2015An Olympic hopeful, an 18-year-old transferring directly into a doctoral program, and several teenagers who are the first in their families to attend college are among the 32 graduates of Mount Wachusett Community College’s dual enrollment programs.

This year’s graduates of the Pathways Early College Innovation School and the Gateway to College program were recognized during a May 26 graduation ceremony at MWCC. The programs, offered in partnership with the Ralph C. Mahar Regional School District, allow students to use school choice funding to earn their high school diploma while simultaneously earning college credits, an academic certificate, or an associate degree.

“We have all been given the amazing opportunity to get two years of college out of the way while in high school, which I am glad we all decided to take on, although challenging,” said Pathways valedictorian Emily Lapinskas of Athol, who earned an associate degree from MWCC last week and will continue her studies in biology at the University of Massachusetts “I have been assured by many parents and current students that it is, indeed, amazing, especially when you look at all the money we save. You’re welcome, mom and dad!”

Gateway valedictorian Samantha Buckler of Winchendon was homeschooled before enrolling in the program. This fall, she is transferring to Keene State College, where she was awarded a presidential scholarship that will cover more than a year’s worth of tuition, fees and housing.

“Gateway is a wonderful opportunity for students of all different backgrounds to receive a high school diploma while earning college credits,” she said. “I am excited to see where life brings me as well as where it will bring everyone else who has been blessed with this opportunity.”

Sarah Raulston of Baldwinville, who earned an associate degree in Liberal Arts and Sciences with a concentration in biology from MWCC last week, is the youngest student to be accepted into the Doctor of Pharmacy program at the University of New England in Maine. With the first two years of the six-year program accepted as transfer credits, she is on target to graduate with a Doctor of Pharmacy degree by the time she is 22.

“I knew I wanted to go to pharmacy school, so I wanted to get a head start. High school is fun, but dual enrollment is such a good opportunity to get ahead,” she said.

Keynote speaker Jason Zelesky, MWCC dean of students, encouraged the graduates to “make lasting, positive change” in a world that needs their optimism, and also took a moment to address their families and friends in the audience. “Thank you for allowing them to take this risk and complete their education in such an innovative and transformative way.”

MWCC vice President of External Affairs, Communications and K-12 Partnerships Lea Ann Scales, Mahar Superintendent Tari Thomas, and MWCC Dual Enrollment Director Craig Elkins also congratulated the students on their achievements.

Established in 2010 as one of the first two innovation schools in Massachusetts, the Pathways Early College Innovation School provides motivated high school juniors and home schooled students the opportunity to accelerate the pace of their academic. MWCC’s Gateway to College program, established in 2005 as the first Gateway site in New England, provides a second chance for students ages 16 to 21 who have dropped out of high school, are at risk of dropping out, or experienced a setback, as well as an opportunity for home schooled students to complete high school and college studies.

MWCC’s Division of Access and Transition is currently enrolling students in both programs for the fall semester.

 

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Rollstone Bank & Trust is the first major sponsor of the new Laptops for Veterans program. From left, Thomas Berger, MWCC Student Trustee-elect and an Army veteran; Linda Racine, Executive Vice President of RBT; MWCC President Daniel Asquino; and Robert Mayer, MWCC Director of Veteran Services

With a donation of $3,000, Rollstone Bank & Trust became the first major sponsor of the new, student-initiated Laptops for Vets program at Mount Wachusett Community College, which is aimed at helping veteran students succeed in their studies. The Veteran Success Center at MWCC was created five years ago to meet the unique needs of veterans transitioning from soldier to veteran. The laptops that were part of the initial program have become outdated, so student trustee and Army veteran Thomas Berger initiated this fundraising program.Martin F. Connors, Jr., President & CEO of Rollstone Bank & Trust, said, “The Rollstone Charitable Foundation’s mission is to strengthen our communities and enhance the academic lives of area students. The veteran students at MWCC have served our country proudly; there is no one more deserving of our help.”

“We are tremendously grateful to Rollstone Bank & Trust for this generous donation to support our student veterans,” said MWCC President Daniel M. Asquino. “Rollstone’s gift provides an immediate jump-start to this initiative.”

Berger’s goal is to equip the Veterans Success Center with 25 new laptops. Tax-deductible donations may be made payable to MWCC Foundation with “Laptops for Vets” in the memo line, and mailed to MWCC Foundation, 444 Green Street, Gardner, MA 01440, or contact Jo-Ann Meagher at jmeagher@mwcc.mass.edu. To learn more about Laptops for Vets, visit mwcc.edu/laptopsforvets.

 

Dean Eileen Costello pins Fortunate Munhutu May 2015

Fortunate Munhutu receives her pin from Dean Eileen Costello during MWCC’s 42nd nurse pinning ceremony.

Ninety eight graduates of MWCC’s day, evening and LPN to ADN  nursing programs celebrated  a  milestone during the 42nd annual Nurse Pinning Ceremony held May 21 at the Fitness & Wellness Center.

Each graduate, dressed in a traditional nurse uniform, was welcomed into the profession by having a nursing pin fastened to her/his lapel by a fellow nurse—a family member, friend or faculty member. The eight-star pin is imprinted with the words “Service to Humanity and the World” with the nursing symbol in the middle.

“This is a big night for our nursing students,” Executive Vice President Ann McDonald told the gathering of hundreds of friends and family members, current students and alumni. “I see first-hand, every day the dedication our nursing students have to their studies and profession.”

Eileen Costello, Dean of the School of Health Professions, Public Service Programs and Social Sciences led the ceremony with the assistance of faculty members.

The graduates also lit electronic candles and recited the Florence Nightinigale Pledge, an oath originally composed in 1893 and named for the founder of modern nursing.

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Student Government Association President Cathy Teague leads the Class of 2015 to their Commencement ceremony.

Unlike Mount Wachusett Community College’s first commencement in 1966, when 71 graduates received associate degrees in six academic programs, the college this year awarded 842 associate degrees and academic certificates to 785 graduates enrolled in nearly 50 program options.

During the college’s 50th commencement on May 20, President Daniel M. Asquino asked the graduates to reflect on their accomplishments and their journey ahead.

“Lives change here like nowhere else. Over the past 50 years, tens of thousands of students have crossed this stage and they are now contributing members of our communities,” he said. “I challenge you to go forward and use your skills and the education that you received to continue these pursuits and to improve your life, that of your family and friends and that of our community, your state and your nation, and that you manifest an overall behavior that generates happiness, goodwill and contagious optimism.”

Kevin Berg

Kevin Berg

Keynote speaker and 2015 Alumnus of the Year Award recipient Kevin Berg urged the graduates to embrace change, persist toward their goals with drive, determination and desire, and accept the help and support of others as needed.“To me there can be no greater honor than being asked to give the Commencement address at the institution that started me on my path in becoming the person I am today,” said Berg, who grew up in Gardner and is now executive vice president of production for CBS Network Entertainment in Los Angeles. “My path clearly had its genesis right here at Mount Wachusett.”After studying broadcasting and communications at MWCC, he worked for six months at a news station in Boston. In the summer of 1984, he moved to LA, where he landed a job in television production and quickly moved up the ranks working with award-winning director Marty Pasetta and then at CBS.

 

Jim Garrison and President Asquino

Long-serving Board of Trustees chairman Jim Garrison received an honorary doctorate of Humane Letters and the 2015 Service Above Self Award for his leadership and generosity. In appreciation, he also received a standing ovation.

MWCC also presented business leader, philanthropist and college advocate James O. Garrison with an honorary doctorate in Humane Letters and the 2015 Service Above Self Award. The award recognizes those who have made significant contributions to MWCC and the 29 North Central Massachusetts cities and towns that make up MWCC’s service area. In addition to extensive community service, Mr. Garrison is a former chair of the college’s Board of Trustees and benefactor of the Garrison Center for Early Childhood Education and Early Childhood Education scholarships.“His philanthropic endeavors have resulted in countless improvements and changes to MWCC that have enhanced the learning environment for college students and children and the vital role the college plays in the community,” President Asquino said.

Student speaker Yasmine Kanaan of Still River, a Business Administration major, shared her poignant story of how MWCC helped her overcome obstacles, redirect her life and discover her potential.

Yasmine Kanaan

Yasmine Kanaan

“My rise was not easy, and my journey continues as I work hard to better myself and put the pieces of my life back together,” she said. “I have gone from a lost young adult with no goals and no identity, to a student with a high GPA, an associate’s degree in business that I was able to complete in one year, and an acceptance to the University of Massachusetts Lowell. This was all possible because this college embraced me and opened so many doors for me. We all owe this day and our success to the Mount for creating that stepping stone, that opportunity for each of us to be able to have a better and brighter future, for creating an environment that makes it easy to transition back into school, and for faculty who are very willing to help and advise us in any way they can.”

Student Trustee Phillip M. Stan was presented with the Trustees’ Award. Bryce Bodley-Gomes of Ashburnham and Cindy Caron of Jaffrey, N.H. received President’s Keys. John Day of Gardner was presented with this year’s Dean’s Key.

Five retiring professors were awarded emeriti status: Joel Anderson, Media Arts & Technology; Paul Laverty, Mathematics; John McNally, Health Sciences, Fitness & Wellness; Elena Natalizia, Criminal Justice; and John Reilly, Business Administration.

Visions & RX awards May 15 2015

Visions and Rx program award winners Rhonda Albert, Renee Chandler, Kimberly Mertell and Stevie LaBelle with Rx senior advisor Catherine Maddox-Wiley, Executive Vice President Ann McDonald, and TRIO SSS Programs Director Gaurav Khanna.

During its annual awards ceremony, MWCC’s Visions and Rx programs celebrated the achievements of graduating and continuing students, welcomed back a program alumnus, and bid a tearful farewell to a longserving staff member who has taken on a new role at the college.

“We have a bumper crop of graduates this year,” said Gaurav Khanna, Director of  the TRIO Student Support Services Programs at MWCC. Many of the graduates are continuing on for bachelor’s degrees, with this year’s graduates transferring to Mount Holyoke College, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, UMass Amherst, UMass Lowell, Fitchburg, Worcester and Westfield state universities, Nichols College, Hampshire Colleges and others.

Edwin Encarnacion, who participated in the Visions program in the mid 1990s shortly after moving to the U.S. from the Dominican Republic, shared how the program and supportive staff were instrumental in helping him excel academically, professionally and personally as he transitioned to life in a new country.  After earning a degree in media arts, Encarnacion went on to earn a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in communciations and instructional technology from Fitchburg State University. He now works as a test engineer for Image Stream Medical.

“I would not be where I am today without the visions Program. I knew I had the drive to succeed, but they made the road a lot easier.”

The Visions Program, which has been offered at MWCC for more than three decades, assists eligible students enrolled in any non-healthcare major. The Rx program, which focuses on supporting students pursuing healthcare majors, is graduating 35 students with associate degrees and certificates.

The programs, funded by the U.S. Department of Education TRIO grants,  help guide participants throughout the college experience and assist those who wish to transfer to a four-year institution by offering a variety of services, including intensive academic advising, transfer and personal counseling, professional tutoring and supplemental instruction. The Visions and Rx programs support income-eligible students, first-generation college students, and students with disabilities.

During the May 15 awards ceremony, graduating Visions Program students who collectively earned 55 associate degrees and certificates were recognized with a number of achievement awards. The President’s Award was presented to graduating Human Resources major Renée Chandler, who will continue studies at Fitchburg State University, and the Visions Award was presented to continuing student Stevie LaBelle, who is pursuing a degree in Criminal Justice. Each will receive a $250 scholarship.

The Rx Award for a continuing student was presented to Kimberly Mertell, who plans to continue studies in Healthcare Information Management. The President’s Award was presented to Rhonda Albert, who is graduating with an associate degree in Human Services and transferring to Anna Maria College to earn a bachelor’s degree in Social Work.

Program mainstay Gloria Correa expressed her admiration for the staff and students, and explained she will continue supporting students in her new position within MWCC’s Financial Aid office.

 

 

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Dental Assisting graduate Stephanie Ollari and her parents, Tim and Sandy, prior to the pinning ceremony.

In between learning about patient care, x-rays and cavity prevention, Mount Wachusett Community College dental assisting student Stephanie Ollari consequently taught her classmates and professors a lesson or two about the life-saving gift of organ donation.

Just two months after donating one of her kidneys to save the life of her father, Tim, the Millers Falls resident stepped onto the stage with fellow graduates during the college’s traditional dental programs pinning ceremony on May 15.

“Steph, you are such an inspiration to all of us,” classmate Kaylynn Gaskell said from the podium. “You have so much determination in you. Thank you for being so brave and having such a kind heart. We love you!”

Gaskell’s words brought tears to the eyes of many attending the event, which celebrated the academic achievements of 12 dental assisting program graduates and 15 dental hygiene program graduates.

Ms. Ollari was joined by her father, mother Sandy, siblings Elysia and John, and boyfriend Bryce Molner, and others who have stood by the family for many years during Mr. Ollari’s health battles, which included a double-lung transplant in 2009 due to an inherited, genetic condition.

She has been waiting two years to be old enough undergo the surgery. Her father had been on a donor list for seven years and on dialysis for three, and originally was adamantly opposed to the idea of accepting a donation from one of his children. But when Ms. Ollari’s siblings said they would willingly do the same for her, should she ever need one, he finally acquiesced.

Ms. Ollari turned out to be a perfect match for her father. They underwent the multi-hour procedure on March 12, National Kidney Day, at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, and both are well on the mend.

“I always say if I had a third one, I’d do it again,” the gregarious 25-year old remarked prior to the pinning ceremony.

“She didn’t miss a beat,” said Cynthia Cadoret, chair of MWCC’s Dental Programs department, which provides trainign at the colleg’s satellite campus in Fitchburg, located within the Fitchburg Family Community Health Center. The surgery was scheduled around spring break, and with some adjustments to her clinical experience schedule, she was able to keep up with her coursework, Cadoret said.

“I am just so very, very proud of her,” Mr. Ollari said of his daughter, who plans to work in the field before returning to her studies to become a dental hygienist. “The dental assisting program was huge for her to get the experience and skills he needs. She was dedicated and determined.”

“She’s very inspiring,” said Sandy Ollari. “She’s been wanting to do this since day one.”

Dental Assisting pinning May 15 2015 guy

Dental Assisting graduate Albert Wiafe is pinned by faculty member Susan Graves during the ceremony.

The ninth annual pinning ceremony included congratulatory remarks from new program chair Cynthia Cadoret, Dr. Melissa Fama, Vice President of Academic Affairs, and guest speaker E. Jane Crocker, president of the American Dental Hygienists Association, Massachusetts, and dental hygiene class president Celine Grimley.

During the ceremony, the graduates were pinned by faculty members and several students were presented with awards.Class President Celine Grimley received the Dental Hygiene Department Award; Tasey Lemieux received the Dental Hygiene Curriculum Award; Samantha Dunn received the Johnson & Johnson Award; Jillian Legere received the Hu Friedy Golden Scaler Award; Sharon DiNardo received the Dental Assisting Department Award, and first year-student Alyssa Adoretti received the Ellen Daly Scholarship.

John Day Cathy Teague Phillip Stan President Daniel Asquino

President Daniel Asquino with award recipients John Day, Cathy Teague and Phillip Stan during MWCC’s annual Evening of Excellence Awards Ceremony. VIEW MORE PHOTOS HERE

Dozens of area students received awards and scholarships during Mount Wachusett Community College’s annual Evening of Excellence academic awards ceremony, held May 14 at the DoubleTree by Hilton in Leominster. The ceremony showcased students receiving national, state and regional awards in recognition of their performance inside the classroom as well as their contributions in the community.

In addition to college curriculum and outstanding achievement awards, the MWCC Foundation also presented a number of memorial awards and scholarships during the ceremony. The foundation has awarded more than $280,000 in scholarships this year.

“This is a fantastic time of the year,” President Daniel M. Asquino told the honorees. “It represents and celebrates your many accomplishments, academic pursuits, civic engagement and contributions to the community.”

The following awards were presented:

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT AWARDS

All USA Academic Team Nominees: Cathy M. Teague and Phillip M. Stan

Visions Program Award: Stevie LaBelle

RX Award: Kimberly Mertell

Best of English 101: John L. Alden, Karin J. May, Lara E. White

Sandy Signor Award: Diane L. Mascitti

Jean Tandy Award: Jessica E. Foley

2015 Newman Civic Fellow Award: John S. Day

Service Learning Scholarship: Lori G. Belliveau, Julianne R. Hutchins

CURRICULUM AWARDS

Accounting: Gregory A. Lizotte

Art: Corinne M. Goodrich

Automotive Technology: David S. Niall

Biological Science: Meghan K. Durgin

Biotechnology/Biomanufacturing: Savannah M. Cooke

Broadcasting and Electronic Media – Video/Film: Jordan S. Jubacz

Broadcasting and Electronic Media – Photography: Michael D. Taillon

Business Administration Career: Pamela A. Mercer

Business Administration Transfer: Derek L. Gaidanowicz

Clinical Laboratory Science: Prabha S. Amaresan

Computer Information Systems: Crystle R. Monahan

Criminal Justice Corrections: Lance M. Grieman

Criminal Justice Law Enforcement: Derek N. Gyles

Dental Hygiene: Tasey J. Lemieux

Early Childhood Education Career: Lauren E. Hildreth

Early Childhood Education Transfer: Heidi M. Lupien

Exercise and Sports Science: Patricia Rousseau

Fire Science Technology: John J. Gilmartin

General Studies: Charles M. Njaaga

Graphic & Interactive Design: Desiree M. Procell

Human Services: Renee P. Chandler

Legal Studies: Kimberly L. Bonk

Liberal Arts & Sciences: Kayara S. Burnett

Liberal Arts – Theatre: Austina L. Towle

LPN to ADN Bridge: Catherine W. Migwi

Medical Assisting: Tess L. Aucoin

Natural Resources: Michelle Nye

Nursing: Karlee E. McIver, Jared E. Robie

Pre-Engineering: Bryce K. Bodley-Gomes, Charles Gesner

MWCC FOUNDATION, INC. AWARDS

Alumni Scholarship: Alexander R. Campbell

Barbara Chaplin Memorial Scholarship: Heidi M. Lupien

Barnes & Noble Scholarship:  Bianca A. DiGiannantonio, Ashley Hancock

Carl Tammi Award: Crystle R. Monahan

Carrie Progen Memorial Scholarship: Kathryn M. Ahearn

Craig Hamel Scholarship: Lindsay M. Howard

Edith Baldyga Scholarship: Roxanna M. Figueroa

Ellen Daly Dental Hygiene Scholarship: Alyssa B. Adoretti

Father Adamo Scholarship: Renee P. Chandler

James D. Murphy Scholarship: Phillip M. Stan

Jonathan C. Craven Scholarship: John S. Day

John Burton Award: Amber Martinez

Joseph B. Ruth Scholarship: Mary Lisa Burns

Keith Nivala Award: Thomas J. Mullins

Marilyn Kiosses Scholarship: Kimberly L. Mills

Melissa Herr Marsh Scholarship: Amy L. Moisan

Millie McGuire Foundation Scholarship: Diane L. Mascitti

Mount Observer Scholarship: Bryan R. Nolan

Robert H. Gilman Memorial Scholarship: Stephanie A. Zamojski

Robert Weibel Award: Garrett J. Watson

Roberts Scholarship: Louis A. Ayisi

Sara Kajel Award: Amanda L. Stewart

Sharyn Rice Award: Aaron Trudeau

MWCC Veteran’s Memorial Scholarship: Aaron Trudeau
MEMORIAL AWARDS

Aspasia Anastos Award: Lara E. White

Judge Moore Award: Bryce K. Bodley-Gomes, Todd Perry

Peter J. Trainor Leadership Award: Thomas Berger
HONORS SOCIETY RECOGNITION

Honors Program Graduates: Victoria R. Allen, Ivy Benoit, Bryce K. Bodley-Gomes, Kayara S. Burnett, Mary Lisa Burns, Chantal A. Froystein, Colette M. Leon, Brandi Logue, Phillip M. Stan

First MWCC graduation 1966

MWCC’s first Commencement exercises took place on June 12, 1966 with 71 graduates. This year, the college will award more than 840 degrees and certificates to 781 graduates. Pictured, from left, 1966 graduates and award recipients Mary Pieloch and Doris Townsend; Dr. Arthur F. Haley, President; graduate and award recipient James Eacmen, Jr.; and Commencement speaker Dr. Howard B. Jefferson, president of Clark University. (Photo courtesy of The Gardner News)

Fifty years ago, lifelong Gardner resident Helen Lepkowski was among a handful of Mount Wachusett Community College faculty members to congratulate the college’s first graduating class.

On Wednesday, May 20, the former business division professor and her husband, Ed, a former MWCC trustee, will maintain their longstanding tradition of attending the celebration. Unlike the first ceremony, where 71 graduates received associate degrees in six academic programs, the college will award more than 840 associate degrees and academic certificates to 785 graduates enrolled in nearly 50 program options.

Mount Wachusett’s first commencement, held outdoors on Sunday, June 12, 1966 at the Elm Street campus, featured Dr. Howard B. Jefferson, the third president of Clark University, as the speaker.

“It was very small and it was just wonderful and intimate. It was a beautiful day,” Mrs. Lepkowski recalled. “It’s always a wonderful opportunity to be there and there are always people you know who are graduating or are there for the occasion.”

MWCC’s 50th Commencement ceremony will begin at 6 p.m. in the college’s Fitness & Wellness Center.

Among this year’s highlights, Gardner native Kevin Berg, executive vice president of production for CBS Network Entertainment in Los Angeles, will deliver the commencement address. Berg also will receive an honorary doctorate of Humanities, as well as the 2015 Alumnus of the Year Award.

Community leader and long-serving volunteer James O. Garrison will receive is the recipient of Mount Wachusett Community College’s 2015 Service Above Self Award. The award recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions within the 29 cities and towns that make up the college’s service area. Mr. Garrison, former MWCC Board of Trustees chair and benefactor of the Garrison Center for Early Childhood Education and Early Childhood Education scholarships, will receive an honorary doctorate of Humane Letters. Prior to the commencement ceremony, President Daniel M. Asquino and the Board of Trustees will recognize Mr. Garrison and his wife, Peggy, for their generous gifts and commitment to students during a rededication of the Garrison Center.

Business Administration graduate Yasmine Kanaan has been selected to deliver the Class of 2015 Student Address.

Five retiring professors will receive emeriti status: Joel Anderson, Media Arts & Technology; Paul Laverty, Mathematics; John McNally, Health Sciences, Fitness & Wellness; Elena Natalizia, Criminal Justice; and John Reilly, Business Administration.

New this year, two food trucks will be on site to curb appetites: The Dogfather Truck of Worcester, and Dylan and Pete’s Ice Cream Truck of Boston. The MWCC Alumni Association will return with flowers for sale, and the Phi Theta Kappa honor society will conduct its 12th annual Project Graduation food drive. Graduates and their guests are asked to bring a non-perishable food item to the commencement rehearsal and/or ceremony. Donations will be delivered to the Gardner Community Action Committee, the Winchendon Community Action Committee, and MWCC’s Students SOS office.