Montgomery College to Celebrate Student Graduation on May 21 Former Montgomery College President Dr. Charlene Nunley to Deliver Address
Montgomery College will celebrate its annual commencement festivities on Friday, May 21 at 10 a.m. The ceremony will be held underneath an outdoor tent on the Rockville Campus athletic field, and will honor graduates from the College’s three campuses in Montgomery County, Md.—Germantown, Rockville, and Takoma Park/Silver Spring—along with apprenticeship graduates in Workforce Development and Continuing Education programs. Of the more than 2,500 students who have completed graduation requirements for associate’s degrees, apprenticeships or certificates this academic year, more than 725 students will participate in the ceremony.
“Commencement is a wonderful opportunity to celebrate the achievements of our students,” said Dr. Hercules Pinkney, interim president of Montgomery College. “As an open access institution of higher education, Montgomery College provides students with an excellent foundation for the fulfillment of their goals—whether they are going from commencement into the workforce or to a four-year college or university.”
Dr. Charlene Nunley, the former president of Montgomery College, will deliver the commencement address. During her tenure from 1999–2007, she helped secure public support and funding for a major expansion of the Takoma Park/Silver Spring Campus; strengthened the College’s partnerships with Montgomery County Public Schools, the Universities at Shady Grove, local businesses, and the greater community; and encouraged the development of several signature academic programs on the College’s three campuses. A strong supporter of the community college mission, she also served on U.S. Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings’ Commission on the Future of Higher Education.
Currently, Dr. Nunley is a professor and program director at the University of Maryland University College. She oversees the university’s doctor of management program in community college policy and administration.
Four Montgomery College Students Selected to Address Fellow Students
The commencement ceremony will also feature speeches by four graduating students who have been selected as the College’s Board of Trustees Scholars. The scholars, who earn an award for future tuition or educational costs, represent each of the three campuses and Workforce Development and Continuing Education. This year’s Board of Trustees Scholars are:
David N. Coleman – Workforce Development and Continuing Education
A Rockville resident, David Coleman pursued his passion for fixing things at the Thomas Edison High School in Wheaton and at Montgomery College. Through the Air Conditioning Contractors of America Chapter, National Capital Chapter’s four-year apprenticeship program at Montgomery College, Coleman has earned a 3.68 grade point average. He is employed by Gary P. Frank, Inc. as a building engineer.
Gabrielle Koscielski – Germantown Campus Born and raised in Germany, Gabrielle Koscielski, a business administration major and a member of Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, is graduating with a 4.0 grade point average. In the United States, she married and started a family, but never attended college. Her eventual divorce led her to realize the importance of education. She encouraged her daughters to earn bachelor’s degrees, and then pursued her own degree at Montgomery College.
Marianne M. Mullan – Rockville Campus With her 4.0 grade point average, Marianne Mullan still finds time to lead the Rockville Campus chapter of Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, dance with the College dance company, and serve as president of the Montgomery County Agricultural Center and Fair’s Junior Board of Directors. She was also named to the All-USA Community College Academic First Team. Mullan will transfer to Franciscan University of Steubenville and major in mental health and human services.
Cody S. Alexander – Takoma Park/Silver Spring Campus Cody Alexander, a radiologic technology and pre-nursing major, is graduating with a 4.0 grade point average. In addition to his coursework at the College, Mr. Alexander is also pursuing a certificate in radiologic technology at Washington Adventist Hospital. He recently enrolled in the nursing bachelor’s degree program at the University of Maryland, Baltimore. He works full time at Shady Grove Adventist Hospital, where he also volunteers for various community outreach programs.
Honorary Degrees Will Go to the Honorable Henry B. “Hank” Heller, Dr. George B. Thomas Sr., and Carol Trawick
Montgomery College will award honorary degrees to the Maryland Delegate Henry “Hank” Heller, Dr. George Thomas, Sr. and Carol Trawick. In addition, as the commencement speaker, Dr. Charlene Nunley will also receive an honorary degree.
The Honorable Henry B. “Hank” Heller is a 1962 graduate of Montgomery College and a member of the Maryland House of Delegates. He has served the residents of Legislative District 19 in Montgomery County for the last 23 years. His current assignments include House chair of the Joint Committee on the Management of Public Funds, vice chair of the Education and Economic Development Subcommittee, member of the Oversight Committee on Pensions, and member of the Appropriations Committee.
Delegate Heller has been a tireless advocate for Montgomery College, both in Annapolis and on the campuses. In addition to serving as a past president of the College’s Alumni Association, he was instrumental in making major changes to the state’s community college funding formula.
Dr. George Thomas Sr. has had a distinguished career of more than 50 years in education. Currently, he is president and chairman of The George B. Thomas Sr. Learning Academy, Inc. (GBTLA), a nonprofit community-based tutoring and mentoring program that he founded in 1986. Working in partnership with Montgomery County Public Schools, the GBTLA enhances and accelerates the academic achievement of students in the basic skills and core academic subjects.
Dr. Thomas previously served as president of Voorhees College in South Carolina, from 1978 to 1983. Following his tenure with Voorhees College, Dr. Thomas served as the first presidential scholar in residence at the National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education (NAFEO).
Nearly 25 years ago, Carol Trawick and her husband, Jim, started Trawick and Associates, an information technology company. The sale of the company in November 2006 led to the establishment of the Jim and Carol Trawick Foundation, which assists local health, human services and arts nonprofit organizations. While Jim Trawick passed away in September 2008, the foundation continues his legacy of community support.
Carol Trawick currently chairs the Strathmore Music Center Board of Directors. A former teacher and high school assistant principal, she is especially supportive of youth programs, which includes the Gateway to College program at Montgomery College.