by Kelly Rogge
Graduation at Kansas City Kansas Community College is quickly approaching, but the annual celebration will look a bit different this year.
Instead of one ceremony, there will be two in an effort to help with security and crowd control. Both ceremonies will be Tuesday, May 19, at the KCKCC Field House, 7250 State Ave.
Commencement participants must attend the ceremony that corresponds with the certificate or degree that they have earned. Seating at both ceremonies is on a first-come, first-served basis. Reserved seating is available for those who require accommodations due to a medical disability.
The ceremony for those students who have earned an associate of applied science and certificates will be at 2 p.m. Check-in begins at 1 p.m. Programs include: Accounting (AAS), Addiction Counselor (Certificate, AAS), Administrative Office Professionals (Certificate, AAS), Audio Engineering (AAS), Auto Collision Repair (Certificate – TEC), Automotive Hybrid and Electric Vehicle (Certificate-TEC), Automotive Technology (Certificate – TEC), Building and Property Maintenance (Certificate – TEC), Computer Repair (Certificate – TEC), Business Administration (AAS), Computer Engineering Technology (Certificate, AAS), Computer Software Technology/Technician (Certificate, AAS), Computer Systems Networking and Telecommunications (Certificate, AAS), Construction Technology (Certificate – TEC), Corrections (Certificate, AAS), Cosmetology (Certificate – TEC), Culinary Arts(Certificate – TEC), Digital Imaging (AAS), Drafting Technology (AAS), Early Childhood Education (Certificate, AAS), Early Childhood Education – CDA Preparation Credential (Certificate), Electrical Technology (Certificate – TEC), Exercise Leader (Certificate), Firefighter (Certificate) Fire Science/Firefighting(AAS), Hazardous Materials Management and Waste Technology (AAS), Heating and Refrigeration (Certificate – TEC), Homeland Security (Certificate), LPN to RN Articulation Program (AAS), Machine Technology (Certificate – TEC), Major Appliance Technology (Certificate – TEC), Marketing and Mid-Management (AAS), Medical Assistant (Certificate – TEC), Mortuary Science (AAS), Multimedia/Video Production (Certificate – TEC), Nail Technology (Certificate – TEC), Networking Technology (Certificate – TEC), Allied Health and Nursing/Practical Nurse (Certificate), Allied Health and Nursing/Registered Nurse (AAS), Office Assistant (Certificate – TEC), Paralegal (AAS), Paramedic/Mobile Intensive Care Technician (AAS), Paramedic/RRT to RN Bridge Program (AAS), Physical Therapist Assistant (AAS), Police Science (Certificate, AAS), Respiratory Therapist/Respiratory Care Therapy (AAS), Technical Studies (AAS), Victim/Survivor Services (Certificate, AAS), Web Application and Design (Certificate) and Welding Technology (Certificate – TEC).
The ceremony for those students who earned an associate of science, associate of arts or associate of general studies will be at 7 p.m. Check-in begins at 6 p.m. Programs include Biology (AGS, AS), Business (AS), Chemistry (AA, AGS), Computer Engineering Technology (AS), Economics (AA), Education, Elementary (AA), Education, Secondary (AA), Environmental Studies (AGS, AS), Exercise Science (AGS), Fine Arts (AA), Forensic Chemistry (AA, AGS, AS), History (AA), Journalism (AA), Music (AA), Music Technology (AGS), Philosophy (AA), Physics/Physical Science (AGS, AS), Political Science (AA), Sociology (AA), Theatre (AA), Theatre Technology (AGS), Victim/Survivor Services (AA), Pre-Agriculture (AGS, AS), Pre-Chiropractic (AGS, AS), Pre-Dental (AGS, AS), Pre-Engineering (AGS, AS), Pre-Exercise Science (AS), Pre-Law (AA), Pre-Medical (AGS, AS), Pre-Medical Technology (AGS, AS), Pre-Allied Health and Nursing (AS), Pre-Nutrition (AGS, AS), Pre-Occupational Therapy (AS), Pre-Optometry (AGS, AS), Pre-Pharmacy (AGS, AS), Pre-Physical Therapy (AS), Pre-Public Administration (AA), Pre-Radiologic Technology (AS), Pre-Respiratory Therapy (AS), Pre-Social Work (AA), Pre-Sports Mgmt. (AA) and Pre-Veterinary (AGS, AS).
“Part of the reason we changed graduation was crowd control,” said Denise McDowell, dean of enrollment management and registrar. “Through our check-in process, we have been able to count how many people we have had in the field house the last two years. We discovered that we had reached capacity. It was quickly becoming a fire marshal concern and a security concern.”
McDowell said that while creating two different ceremonies will address the overcrowding issues, she said she does realize students and their families will have to make adjustments – especially with the 2 p.m. ceremony.
“We do understand that this is a significant change for the students,” she said. “That is why we are trying to get the message out about that 2 p.m. ceremony, so families can make the appropriate adjustments.”
The graduation speaker for both ceremonies will be Judge Tim Dupree, who is a 1999 graduate of KCKCC. He is a Wyandotte High School alum and received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Kansas in 2001. He then attended the Washburn University School of Law where he earned a Juris Doctorate in 2003. Before becoming a judge of the 29th Judicial District in 2014, he worked as an assistant county attorney in Emporia, Kan. and as an attorney in Wyandotte County.
“He is a Wyandotte County resident and is a graduate of KCKCC,” McDowell said. “That is what made him such an attractive candidate.”
All students who have completed all degree requirements for the spring 2015 semester as well as fall 2014 and summer 2014 are eligible to participate in commencement. Students who are within nine hours of completing degree requirements in summer 2015 are also eligible to participate.
In addition, those students with at least a 3.4 grade point average qualify to graduate with honors and can wear an honors cord during commencement. Honors are awarded to students for completed coursework. Red, white and blue cords are available to active-duty service members, military veterans and spouses or dependent family members of active duty service members and veterans. These cords will be available at graduation check-in.
For more information on 2015 commencement exercises including graduation fees, visit http://kckcc.edu/admission/returning-students/graduation-information. Information is also available by contacting a graduation specialist at 913-288-7519 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.