Story and photos by Josh Avendano and Adrian Arvizu
Over 800 students graduated from Long Beach City College with an Associate degree or a certificate of accomplishment on Thursday, June 8, 2016 as families, friends, and loved ones attended the day’s event to celebrate the students.
The ceremony filled many people’s dreams of success. Even the older graduates held their heads up high, aiming for a better life and education. At the age of 50, Mary Ann Chavez, communication major, plans to continue her education at Cal State Long Beach. Chavez was amongst the older students in the graduating class, Chavez said, “It is never too late to go back and do better, the sense of accomplishment is so amazing.”
There was no way better to celebrate the day’s event than graduating with the person you love. For married couple Broderick and Gloria Allen, they did just that. The two have been married for almost 30 years and received the Certificate of human services. Gloria Allen, 54, a human service major said, “It’s been a journey, but with God’s help he gave us the strength to finish our goal and to double up on the work. “
Broderick Allen, 56, a human service major, added on to what his wife said, saying, “We give all the glory to God and we are looking forward to what happens next because we’re not done yet.”
Student trustee, Alejandro Lomeli, 22, a business admin major who plans to transfer to Cal State Long Beach, was one of the many graduates basking in the glory of their achievement. Lomeli who applied to LBCC on a whim after taking time off after graduating high school. He realized he loved being in involved in the community and helping others. Lomeli said, “If It was not for this school I would not have been the person I am here today, I am so grateful for my friends and the staff they helped me get here.”
Daisy Rose, 19, a neuroscience major who plans to transfer to the University of California of Irvine, was excited to be moving on with her life and with her degree, she said, “I think graduating is a natural process and trying to reach for a higher education and being a first generation college student means economic stability and making sure that my parents are taken care of.”
Parents, families, and loved ones gathered together as the sun started to set. A few speakers in the ceremony, there was no person prouder than May Tigas mother of student Nikki Tigas. May Tigas said, “My daughter is a double major and she was really inspired. She worked very hard to get here I’m so proud.”
Margaret Shannon, an English professor here at LBCC was proud to see some of her students graduate and move on. She commented on the student’s success saying, “I feel that LBCC is definitely one of the top schools in at least the South Bay area and any student should really consider coming here before attending a university. I feel that LBCC will prepare you more for a university than a university will in the first two years there. The days where going to a CC was considered bad are over, this school is only getting better and that is because of the students that attend here.”
Summer session will begin on June 19 and last six weeks ending on July 27. Fall session will begin on August 28 and conclude on December 16.