(WACO) – More than 380 graduates received certificates and associate degrees at Texas State Technical College’s Spring 2018 Commencement held Monday, April 30, at the Waco Convention Center.
For Daniel Follis, an instructor in the Cyber Security program, watching his students achieve their education goals does not get tiring to see. He estimated he has attended 18 TSTC commencement exercises.
“I make them a promise when they start that I will shake their hands when they walk across the stage,” Follis said.
Several of Friday’s graduates already have jobs.
Cynthia Martinez, 19, of Hutto received the Dental Assistant certificate. She is working to transition from clinical work to full-time employment at Little Hippos Pediatric Dentistry n Hutto.
“It feels good to actually have a job and have an opportunity to start in the workforce,” Martinez said. “It’s a little scary but being in clinicals got me used to it. I am more comfortable in Hutto.”
Sydney Vanwinkle, 23, of Waco was a Phi Theta Kappa graduate who received a Pharmacy Technician certificate. She will transition from clinical work at Drug Emporium on Bosque Boulevard to part-time employment as she starts an associate degree in accounting this summer at McLennan Community College.
Vanwinkle said she would miss her classmates.
Some graduates are considering job offers.
Jonah Swandt, 22, of Keller received the Associate of Applied Science degree in Robotics Technology. He had several relatives in attendance watching him walk across the stage.
Swandt said he enjoyed the hands-on learning and understanding how to make the transition from college to the workforce.
“I hope to make a decision on a job in a week or two,” he said.
After the commencement ceremony, Electrical Lineworker Technology graduate Jeff Montgomery, 24, proposed marriage to his longtime girlfriend, Leeann Roen. And, she said yes.
“It’s been five years,” he said. “We met in high school.”
Montgomery will be working for Pike Electric at Fort Hood.
Roen held back tears as she looked at her engagement ring.
“I’m overwhelmed and excited,” she said.
Earlier in the day, the Dental Assistant program held a Pinning Ceremony for graduates at the John B. Connally Technology Center.
For more information, log on to tstc.edu.