CCTC celebrates nearly 600 new graduates

Central Carolina Technical College held two commencement ceremonies Friday, May 11 at the Sumter County Civic Center to accommodate nearly 600 graduates.

The 10:00 a.m. ceremony was for students graduating from Business and Public Service programs. The 3:00 p.m. ceremony was for students graduating from General Education, Health Sciences and Industrial and Engineering Technology programs. Freshman Seminar Coordinator and 2018 Faculty of the Year Award Recipient Ms. Deborah Seymour delivered the keynote address at the 10:00 a.m. ceremony. Massage Therapy Program Manager and 2017 E.C. “Red” Kneece Award Recipient Mr. Brent Jackson spoke at the 3:00 p.m. ceremony.

Mechatronics Academic Program Manager Bert Hancock was honored during the morning commencement ceremony as this year’s recipient of the E.C. “Red” Kneece Teaching Excellence Award. Hancock is consistently spoken of as one of the best instructors on campus by students and fellow faculty and regularly volunteers and participates in college-related and community service activities.

Ms. Cathy Kovacs was honored with an Outstanding Alumni Award during the morning service. Kovacs graduated from CCTC with an Associate Degree in Early Care and Education in 2004. She later received a Bachelor of Arts in Child and Family Services at Columbia College, and most recently earned a Master of Education from the University of South Carolina. She currently serves as the Program Manager for ABC Quality at the South Carolina Department of Social Services in the Division of Early Care and Education. Kovacs is also an Adjunct Instructor in CCTC’s Early Care and Education department. “CCTC gave me guidance and encouragement and provided me with the foundational coursework that supported my success. This encouragement gave me confidence and the realization that I could set and achieve my long-term goals, which eventually led me to graduate school and a career that now allows me to impact the lives of children statewide,” says Kovacs.

Mr. Al Harris was also honored with an Outstanding Alumni Award during the afternoon service. Harris graduated with an Associate Degree in Civil Technology in 1972, when Central Carolina Technical College was formerly known as Sumter Area Technical College. Harris currently serves as an Assistant City Manager for the City of Sumter. He supports the city manager with supervising projects, budget planning, and the daily operations for all public service departments for the city including utilities, sanitation, parks and gardens, construction, electrical and engineering. “The knowledge gained through the classroom, the many hours of studying at home, and the encouragement received from instructors at Central Carolina helped lay the foundation for my career. CCTC not only prepared me to be a qualified candidate for employment, but also gave me confidence in the workplace to be competitive for the job I wanted,” says Harris.

Seven students from Lee Central High School and Manning High School enrolled in the Dual Enrollment Program that is offered at CCTC, graduated with General Education Certificates from CCTC before they are finished with high school. They are Ja’Curas McCloud, Myasia Oliver, Haley Ray, Ty’Keila Scarborough, Charena Myers, Sierra Scarborough, and Dway-Leka Dickey. Fifteen students from Manning High School, Laurence Manning Academy, East Clarendon High School and the Homeward Education Association graduated with Associate Degrees from CCTC that were enrolled in the Early College Program. They are Megan Geddings, Maisie Johnson, Hannah Ridgeway, Mason Ham, Brandon Burgess, Montgomery King, Sarah Green, Kasey Floyd, Milagro Sierra, Maysey Floyd, Laci McElveen, Olivia Singletary, McKenna Cady, Daniel Johnson and Emilee Welch.