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Area Graduates Recognized at OTC Adult Education Graduation




The Okefenokee Technical College (OTC) October 24, 2013, adult education graduation ceremony was held Thursday evening at 7 p.m. at the Waycross Middle School Auditorium.

Those who participated in the commencement are graduates of the OTC adult education program who successfully passed the last of five required General Educational Development (GED) exams and chose to be formally recognized for their accomplishments. Graduates included residents from all six counties served by Okefenokee Technical College’s adult education program.

The ceremony began with the processional and a welcome by Ms. Kelly Peacock, Assistant Director of Adult Education, followed by the invocation. Pierce County graduate Ashley Jones Hilliard gave the invocation.

The Colors were presented by the Ware County High School JROTC Color Guard: Sakyarh McAllister (Lead Marshall), James Owens, Trae’von Mitchell, Shawn Mackey, and Juwan Rollings. Mr. Darrell Casey, Charlton County Adult Education Instructor, led the audience in the Pledge of Allegiance. Immediately following, Mr. Stephen McQuaig, OTC Brantley County adult education instructor, sang The National Anthem and performed a special song selected specifically in celebration of the graduates.

Mr. Andy Brannen, Vice President for Economic Development, introduced the keynote speaker, Dr. Melanie Thornton, OTC Vice President for Academic Affairs.

Dr. Thornton congratulated the 2013 graduates and encouraged them to continue their education. Salutatorian Ivy Kay Solomon of Ware County, Valedictorian Kenneth Allan Brick of Charlton County, and Valedictorian Shena Turlington of Pierce County presented speeches of inspiration, encouragement, and victory to their peers and other attendees.  They expressed appreciation to those who provided encouragement and assistance.

On hand to congratulate graduates and participate in the evening celebration were the following Okefenokee Technical College officials and staff:  Dr. Glenn Deibert, President; Mr. Andy Brannen, Vice President for Economic Development; Ms. Kelly Peacock, Assistant Director of Adult Education; Dr. Mildred Stovall, Transition Program Specialist; and the following adult education full-time Instructors:  Mr. Darrell Casey (Charlton), Ms. Cathy Daniels (Ware), Mr. Stephen McQuaig (Brantley), Ms. Gloria Reid (Pierce), Mrs. Beth Strickland (Bacon), and Mrs. Patia Tolle (Clinch).

Graduates were presented to the audience by their instructor. Dr. Deibert, assisted by Ms. Peacock, presented diplomas to the following students who satisfactorily completed requirements for graduation and participated in the ceremony:

Bacon County
Ashley Lynn Canela, April Rose Smith, and Elizabeth Lucille Taylor (honor graduate).

Brantley County
Randi Nicole Drawdi, Kayla Shae Gaskin, Lana Marie Rolls, Johnny MacArthur Runyon, and Kathryn Smith.

Charlton County
 Kenneth Allen Brick (valedictorian), Cynthia Joyce Craigmiles, Nikisha Monchel Craigmiles, Robert Randall Hadley (honor graduate), Teresa Michelle King, Brianna Grace Lloyd, Brittany Michelle Lloyd, Erica Taylor Mandrell, Amanda Michelle Moore,
Kimberly Renee Rewis, Ortinseeya Vanessa Louise Tarpley, and Lindsey Vincent.

Clinch County
Katelyn Narrissa Altman, Heather Renee Graddy, Cole Everett Tucker, and Savannah Danielle Youmans.

Pierce County
Ashley Jones Hilliard (honor graduate), Shelly Alysia Landon (honor graduate), Alisa Ann Mobley, Joyce Murchinson, Pamela Stewart, and Shena Turlington (valedictorian).

Ware County
Crystal Wynne Beverly, Bobby W. Britt Jr. (honor graduate), Kody Johnathan Dukes, Mercedes Anslee Holder, Jacob Doyle Millard, Austin Perritt (honor graduate), Katrina Lynn Rucker, Ivy Kay Solomon (salutatorian), Karly Cheyenne Thomas, and Joshua James Walker.

When all graduates had been named and had their award in hand, Dr. Glenn Deibert lead them in “The Moving of the Tassel,” which commemorates the official act of a candidate for graduation becoming an actual graduate. 

The auditorium was filled with family, friends, and supporters of the graduates who joined Dr. Deibert in congratulatory celebrations.

The benediction was given by Savannah Danielle Youmans, Clinch County graduate. Ushers were Mrs. Carol Sciscilo, Brantley County adult education adjunct instructor, and Mrs. Nina Garcia, adult education student. The pianist was Ms. Sandra Chapman.  Mr. Robert Benchoff managed the lights and sound. 

OTC holds an adult education commencement twice each year, spring and fall.  Students who participate in graduation ceremonies represent a portion of those who attend OTC adult education classes and receive a diploma as a result of passing all five GED exams. 

For more information about the GED or adult education program, visit or call (912) 287-6580.

Ware County Graduates

Photo: Graduation Oct 2013 Ware County
Mrs. Cathy Daniels (Front, Right), Ware County program instructor is pleased to announce her most recent graduates: (Front Row, L to R): Crystal Wynne Beverly, Karly Cheyenne Thomas, Ivy Kay Solomon (salutatorian), Katrina Lynn Rucker, Mercedes Anslee Holder, (Back, L to R) Joshua James Crawford Walker; Austin Perritt (honor graduate), Jacob Doyle Millard, and Kody Johnathan Dukes. Congratulations to these Ware County residents who participated in the October 24, 2013, OTC adult education graduation ceremony at the Waycross Middle School auditorium.

Clinch County Graduates

Photo: 008 – Clinch Grads
Patia Tolle (left), Clinch County program instructor; Mildred Stovall (2nd from left),  OTC transition specialist; and Kelly Peacock (right), assistant director of adult education are pleased to announce Clinch County’s most recent graduates: (L to R):  Cole Tucker, Savannah Youmans, Heather Graddy, and Katelyn Altman. Congratulations to these Clinch County residents who participated in the October 24, 2013, OTC adult education graduation ceremony at the Waycross Middle School auditorium.

Charlton County Graduates

Photo: 2828
Congratulations to the following Charlton County residents who participated in the October 24, 2013, OTC adult education graduation ceremony: Erica M. Mandrell (L to R), Ortinseeya V. Tarpley, Teresa M. King, Amanda M. Moore, Cynthia J. Craigmiles, Nikisha M. Craigmiles, Lindsey Vincent, Kayla S. Gaskin, Brianna G. Lloyd, Brittany G. Lloyd, Kenneth A. Brick (valedictorian), and Kimberly Rewis Not pictured: Robert R. Hadley (honor graduate).



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