Celebrating achievement: 1,000 local college graduates to receive degrees, certificates

The two largest colleges in Columbus will conduct commencements on Saturday, when about 1,000 students will earn degrees or certificates.

Ivy Tech Community College will have its commencement at 10 a.m. to celebrate the graduation of 714 students at its Columbus campus. The ceremony will be at the Columbus North High School Gymnasium. More than 900 credentials will be awarded this year from the Columbus campus, including 380 associate degrees, 443 technical certificates and 99 certificates.

Katie Mote, interim chancellor for the Ivy Tech Columbus/Southeast region, will officiate during commencement. She will be joined by Chris Lowery, Ivy Tech senior vice president for workforce alignment and former chancellor overseeing the Columbus campus, as well as other college officials to honor the graduates. Lowery will address the graduates and confer the degrees and certificates.

During the ceremony, an honorary associate of science degree will be given to Terry Sargent, superintendent of Jennings County School Corp. It is being presented for outstanding advocacy by Sargent for Ivy Tech and for his help in expanding the iGrad mentoring program to the county’s high school. His work helped secure a $75,000 grant to help fund iGrad and leads the team to continue seeking grants and funding for the program.

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Meanwhile, 294 degrees will be awarded to graduates of IUPUC, who have the option of attending the 2 p.m. Saturday program at Columbus East High School or one in Indianapolis on Sunday. Family and friends are invited to take part in the Columbus post-ceremony reception with light refreshments in the auxiliary gymnasium.

IUPUC will be graduating its first cohort of Honors Program students. Nine students will graduate with this distinction and will receive a special medal designed by one of the students.

To be admitted to the program, students must have a cumulative high school grade point average of 3.75, an ACT composite score of 28 or higher or an SAT score of 1250 or higher. Students complete an additional 24 hours of coursework within in their major.

Columbus business owner Tony Moravec will give the IUPUC commencement address. He is the president and chief executive officer of Blairex Laboratories; president and co-founder of Applied Laboratories; owner of Zaharakos Ice Cream Parlor and Museum; and a principal in the Upland Brewing Company, which operates the Upland Pump House Restaurant in Columbus.

Ivy Tech commencement

Ivy Tech Community College commencement will be 10 a.m. Saturday at Columbus North High School Gymnasium, 1400 25th St.

IUPUC commencement

IUPUC’s commencement will be held 2 p.m. Saturday at Columbus East High School, 230 S. Marr Road.

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Kaitlyn Evener is an editorial assistant for The Republic. She can be reached at kevener@therepublic.com or 812-379-5633.