Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

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May 18, 2014

Bluefield State College bids farewell to graduates

BRUSHFORK — In a celebration of Bluefield State College’s past, present, and future, 389 BSC students graduated and an audience of more than 4,000 packed the Brushfork Armory for the college’s 113th commencement exercises on Saturday.

Dr. Carolyn Stuart, a BSC alumna and Executive Director of the Herbert Henderson Office of Minority Affairs, delivered the commencement address.

Stuart, a West Virginia native, was born in McDowell County. She received a Bachelor of Arts in Social Sciences from Bluefield State College, a Master of Arts in Counseling from Marshall University, and a Ph.D. in Counselor Education from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.

“I am proud to tell people I have a degree from Bluefield State College,” Stuart told the graduates and their families.

She urged the graduates to make good use of the knowledge they have gained at Bluefield State.

“Know that your time spent at Bluefield State College prepared you with knowledge and skills that will let you compete with the best of the best,” Stuart said.

Three Bluefield State College students, each of whom maintained a perfect 4.0 grade point average, were recognized as co-valedictorians of the BSC Class of 2014.  They were Catherine Harrison (Social Science), Tara Hazelwood (Elementary Education), and Joanna Post (Elementary Education).  This year’s salutatorians were James Bowling (Architectural Engineering Technology and Civil Engineering Technology) and Danielle Clarkson (Elementary Education).

The Bluefield State College Foundation “Outstanding Faculty Award, 2014” was presented to Dr. Jeff Bolten, Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering Technology.  Dr. Bolten has completely restructured the curriculum for the Mechanical Engineering Technology program and he redesigned a laboratory for the program.  He also serves on the BSC Faculty Senate and the Student Appeals Committee.

Justin Joseph, a Business Administration major, was named as the 2014 recipient of the “Brian Delp Service Leadership Award.”  Joseph was active in a variety of student initiatives and was instrumental in the establishment of the Bluefield State College chapter of Enactus, a student organization that applies business and economic concepts to develop entrepreneurial expertise.

Eleven members of the BSC Class of 1964, returned to their alma mater to participate in the commencement program on the golden anniversary of their graduation.  BSC Alumni Association President Mildred Washington administered the alumni oath to all members of the graduating class of 2014.

Graduates who were making last minute preparations before Saturday’s ceremony said they were glad to receive their diplomas.

“It’s been a long road to here, and to be finally graduating is an honor. Bluefield State has some great students, so to be part of that alumni program is quite exciting,” said Casey Perkins, 21, of Montcalm. “

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