IVCC class of 2017 celebrates commencement

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Aelsa Butler, IV Leader Co-Editor-in-Chief

The sea of black caps and gowns that filled the IVCC gym on Sat., May 20, represented a portion of the graduating class of 2017.

According to IVCC President Jerry Corcoran, around 240 of over 800 graduating students participated in the commencement ceremonies.

IVCC sophomore Akari Oya, winner of the Paul Simon essay contest, delivered a reading of her essay, “How IVCC Changed My Life,” comparing her involvement at IVCC to the way certain animals are acclimated to their natural habitats. She remarked on how her time at IVCC has built friendships and networks.

Kaitlyn Raineri, a 2016 IVCC graduate, delivered the commencement address, encouraging the students to use the networking they’ve done at IVCC in the broader world and to go bravely into the next phase of the journey.

Trevor Finnan of Utica received the distinguished Matthiessen award, an award given to a high-scholarship student with excellent campus and community service, kept secret until its announcement at the commencement ceremony. Finnan was the president of IVCC’s Rho Omega chapter of Phi Theta Kappa, a 21st Century Scholars’ Society Special Recognition Scholar, one of the two students from IVCC named to the All-Illinois Academic Team, and the recipient of a full-tuition transfer scholarship to Eureka College.

The IV Leader live-streamed the ceremony, overseen by Gary Talsky, and the video can be found at the IV Leader’s Facebook page or on YouTube on the IV Leader channel. Three editors at the IV Leader, Aelsa Butler, Maddi Loiselle and Lindsey Bennett, all graduated, as well as some staff writers from the past few years: Allie Hawbaker, Lindsey Choate, Tyler Clark, Trevor Finnan, Sarah Tipton, Savanna Weitzel and Brittany Blomquist. The departing Editors-in-Chief of the IV Leader, Butler and Loiselle, are grateful for their time in leadership and for the contributions of all these fine writers.

Despite the fact that so many students have completed their education for the year, IVCC is still open and active; summer session A began on Mon., May 22.

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