Every year KPC students, staff and faculty look forward to commencement, a time to recognize all the hard work and dedication of students and celebrate all they have accomplished. This year’s commencement ceremony, a combined KRC and KBC event, was held virtually on May 5. The ceremony was presented on Facebook and YouTube, and on the KPC website.
This year’s graduating class includes the following graduates: ?? GEDs, 12 American Welding Certificants, 46 Certified Nursing Aide Course Completers, 4 1-Year Certificates, 15 Occupational Endorsement Certificates, 26 US Coast Guard Certifications, 16 Associate of Arts Degrees, 23 Associate of Applied Science Degrees, and 17 Other UA Degrees.
Commencement speakers included KRC valedictorian Sophia Nelson and KBC valedictorian Rosemary Kauffman, both graduating with Associate of Arts General Program degrees. UA President Pat Pitney, UAA Chancellor Sean Parnell, and KPC Director Dr. Cheryl Siemers also spoke, congratulating the graduates and wishing them well in their next endeavors.
KPC was honored to host this year's keynote speaker Clare Swan. Clare was born and raised on the Kenai Peninsula and has made a large impact locally and across the state. Clare chaired the Kenaitze Indian tribe for 15 years. She tirelessly worked to secure set net fishing rights for the Tribe and helped to establish the Dena’ina Health Clinic and the youth and community agricultural program, as well as the Cook Inlet Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse. Clair is committed to community well-being and the work of Alaska Native language revitalization. Clair has been recognized as an influential indigenous leader and Alaskan trailblazer for these times.
Clair's address provided a personal reflection on the shared history these last few years during the Covid pandemic and points toward ways people might work together to use their learning, their knowledge, and backgrounds to make connections with one another, to build trust, and contribute toward a better tomorrow.
Susan Browning, KPC commencement coordinator, worked hard to create a ceremony that reflected the pride that all of KPC has for its many graduates this year. The KPC graduating class of 2022 exemplifies the quality and perseverance of all KPC students.
Photo: KRC Staff congratulating 2022 graduates (photo provided by KPC Advancement)