In his commencement address, Mark Anderson, business owner, Ogeechee Tech alum and recipient of OTC’s 2020 Distinguished Alumni award, commended the graduates for their resiliency, flexibility and compassion during difficult times.
“You are a class of winners, these trying times will be with us for the rest of our lives, but you have done one better, you have earned a degree,” he said. “You not only have made each other stronger, but you have made OTC a better institution.”
During the ceremony, there were 2,142 awards conferred to 1,154 graduates in the class of 2020 – many students received multiple awards. “This is my favorite day of the academic year,” said OTC president, Lori Durden. “A year’s worth of work for our students, faculty, and staff culminates into this very moment. Most importantly, it symbolizes the tenacity and perseverance of our graduates.”
In April 2020, Ogeechee Tech postponed having an in-person commencement ceremony because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Due to an increasing number of COVID-19 cases in the local community, the college made the difficult decision to transition the in-person ceremony to a virtual celebration.
“This ceremony is like no other in Ogeechee Tech’s history, and you are like no other class in Ogeechee Tech’s history,” said Durden in her address to the graduates. “The last few months have certainly created challenges for each of you, and I’m proud of your grit and determination during these uncertain times,” she continued.
Ogeechee Tech worked with Full Measure Education to create a unique virtual commencement celebration for OTC graduates, the first of its kind for the college.
“Our partnership with Full Measure gave us the opportunity to honor our students’ accomplishments while also giving them the ability to participate in a virtual ceremony,” said Christy Rikard, Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs. “Graduates were able to send in photos and quotes that were shown while their names were called, and could celebrate with their friends and families. It was a unique way to recognize all of our graduates and make this a special experience for them.”
A copy of the OTC 2020 Virtual Commencement Ceremony can be found on the college’s YouTube page