May 19, 2003
INFORMATION: Sue Bozman or John McElwain, (661) 362-3415 or 3494
College of the Canyons Graduates 786 on May 23
2003 Graduation by the Numbers
The 2003 graduating class at College of the Canyons will celebrate commencement at 6 p.m. Friday, May 23. Seven-hundred-eighty-six students have applied for graduation and will receive degrees. This is a 4 percent increase over last year. The class is composed of 520 women and 266 men. They will assemble in the central-campus Honor-Grove that has become the traditional site of the graduation ceremony.
This years class will receive associate of arts or science degrees reflecting their accomplishments in 47 distinct courses of study. The average age of the class is 26 years down from last years 26.4. The youngest graduate is 17, and the eldest graduate is 65.
Fifteen international students representing six countries will receive degrees this year. Forty-one students are graduating from the popular Progressive Adult College Education (PACE) program. The Disabled Student Programs and Services (DSP&S) program will graduate 17, and there are 40 students receiving degrees who participated in the Extended Opportunity Program and Services (EOPS) program.
The graduating class grade point average (GPA) is 3.03, nearly identical to last years class GPA. Five students are graduating as valedictorians, having posted perfect 4.0 GPAs during their studies at the college. The number of honors graduates (those graduating with a GPA of 3.5 or above) is 154.
Patricia Blair (business major) and Deborah Lynn Roberts (student government president) will be the featured student speakers.
The subject area with the highest number of graduates is general education with 216 graduates. There are 168 social science graduates, and the nursing program will have 65 RN/LVN graduates. Ethnic minorities represent 33.7 percent of the graduating class.
The number of students who achieve enough credits to transfer to four-year colleges and universities, as well as those who have worked toward the completion of certificate programs, will not be available until later in the summer.
Note 1 to Editors: Our youngest graduate is 17. Elizabeth Iliescu is a concurrently enrolled student from Saugus High School. Iliescu will receive her AA degree a week before she graduates from high school! According to her mother Elena, Elizabeth will take two additional courses this summer at COC that will allow her to enter the University of Maryland in the fall as a junior. She will major in theater arts at Maryland. Incidentally, Elizabeth will leave her college graduation ceremony and go directly to Saugus High School where she is playing the role of Sandy in Saugus rendition of the rock-musical Grease that same night. The family welcomes phone calls from reporters: (661) 297-2163.
Note 2 to Editors: Mayra and Ademi Teran are first-generation college students who are Latina. They are first cousins who live with their respective families in the same household in Newhall. They are often confused as sisters when walking together on campus at COC as they regularly do. They have had to encounter various adversities to achieve their educational goals, among them a recent death in the family. Both will be graduating from COC this Friday, May 23, and they will also participate in the second-annual Bilingual Family Celebration to be held at the COC Cougar Den after commencement ceremonies.
Note 3 to Editors: The graduation ceremony will start at 6 p.m., but seats are expected to fill beginning around 5 p.m. Attendees will be entertained as they wait by the COC Jazz Ensemble, a popular jazz group under the direction of longtime COC music instructor Stewart Dirk Fischer.