Graduates pour out of the gymnasium to greetings of friends, familiy, faculty an staff. More photos
Community and perseverance were the themes at the Shoreline Community College Commencement for the Class 2013.
Comments by the speakers at the June 9 event - student William C. Holmes III, faculty member Mimi Harvey and State Rep. Cyrus Habib – all focused on the idea that when personal strength is combined with societal support, great things can happen for both the individual and community.
Holmes said he was a high school dropout who re-engaged through the Career Education Options program. He went on to lead the college’s DECA team that recently returned from an award-winning effort at the national and international competition for business, marketing and entrepreneurship. Holmes emphasized that his accomplishments came with the help and support of many.
Harvey, who teaches Communications Studies, focused on the concept of community, but then asked the soon-to-be-graduates and audience to make that concept a reality. “Look around you, really, look around,” Harvey implored. “This is community, this is coming together.”
Habib’s own story is inspirational on its own. The 31-year-old legislator from Kirkland was blinded by cancer by age 8. He went on to become a Rhodes Scholar, Truman Scholar and graduate of Columbia University (Summa Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa), Oxford University and Yale Law School where he served as editor of the Yale Law Journal.
“It would be easy for me to say ‘I did that, it was all me,’ and that might make me feel really good about myself,” Habib said. “Except it isn’t true.”
Habib said he did go to “all those fancy schools, but I started at what was then Bellevue Community College, which is why I’m so honored to be here today.” He went on to recount all the other assistance he received, both from supportive parents and public institutions, which has allowed him to be successful.
Also at the event, Professor Emeritus awards were given to three retiring faculty members, including Ed Harkness, English; Carla Hogan, Accounting; and Hermein Watkins, Nursing.
College President Lee Lambert presented Student Service awards to Walter Davis, Alex Peterson and Joice Pranata.