Guilford Technical Community College honors 2,060 graduates during 58th annual commencement exercises

Published on: May 9, 2024
First generation college student/graduate walks across the stage at GTCC’s 11 a.m. 58th annual commencement exercise at the Greensboro Coliseum.
First generation college student/graduate walks across the stage at GTCC’s 11 a.m. 58th annual commencement exercise at the Greensboro Coliseum.

JAMESTOWN, N.C. (May 9, 2024) – Today, Guilford Technical Community College honored 2,060 students with 2,628 credentials, diplomas, and degrees, during the college’s 58th annual commencement exercise at Greensboro Coliseum.

In his address, GTCC President Anthony Clarke, Ph.D., offered congratulations and thanked families and friends for their support.

“Congratulations to our graduates,” said President Clarke. “Parents and friends, thank you for attending Guilford Technical Community College’s 2024 commencement exercises. Your presence today is very meaningful to the graduates and to the administration, faculty, and staff of the college.”

Speakers for the graduation programs were two members of the graduating class – Carolina Torres and Matt Upchurch – selected through an application process and panel review to represent their class.

Torres, who received an associate in applied science, dental hygiene, said in her speech that the inclusive atmosphere at GTCC always made her feel welcome. She also praised the support given by the college’s staff.

“G-Tech is a place that provides an education for all and is a diverse institution which was one of the main things that made me want to attend the college,” said Torres. “Coming from a Mexican background, me and my family have experienced our fair share of discrimination throughout our lives simply for being different.

“But during my time at GTCC, everyone was very inclusive, and I have experienced amazing academic support from many of the staff members. No matter what background you come from, I can confidently say that you’ll be able to find your place at Guilford Tech, and I am beyond proud to have been given the chance to represent the Hispanic community.”

The 32-year-old Upchurch, who received an associate in arts and plans to transfer to UNC-Chapel Hill, said during his address that GTCC provides a supportive community for its student body.

“The strange and wonderful thing about community college is that it represents the community,” said Upchurch. “The truth is, there is no universal story here. None of us have walked the same path to arrive where we are today. Some of you attended Guilford Tech while still in high school. Some of you enrolled right after. Others like me, waited years before we knew what we wanted.

“We are immigrants, parents, friends, children, siblings, and students. We all have our own story … we all have our own path. But our search for a home … a place where we belong, that is what unites us as a community. And you, our community, bring us all together – our friends, family, coworkers, teachers, and peers. You drive us to achieve, you push us to reach higher, you dare us to dream big and to want more, not just for ourselves, but for you, our community. You all unite us as Titans.”

In addition to the graduation ceremony, students and staff were recognized for achievements during the 2023-2024 school year.

The Outstanding Associate in Applied Science Degree Graduate Award winner was Bryson Nicoletta (hospitality management). The Outstanding Diploma Graduate Award winner was Shannon Douglas (cosmetology).

The Outstanding College Transfer Graduate Award winner was Brianna Biggons (associate in science).

The 2024 Board of Trustees Teaching Innovation Award was presented to Megan Simpson, associate professor, English.

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