The 2011 JCHS Winter Commencement Ceremony was held on Friday, Dec. 16, 2011 at the Jefferson Center in Roanoke, Virginia.
The ceremony took place in Shaftman Hall, a performance space inside the center. This is a view from the stage before the event began.
As the time drew near for the beginning of the ceremony, Dr. David Haynes, Director of the JCHS Master of Science in Occupational Therapy Program, took the stage to ask everyone to stand as our faculty and soon-to-be graduates entered. He looks awfully stern in this shot!
Leading the procession into the performance hall was the College Leadership Team, which includes the President, our Deans and our Academic Chairs.
Shaftman Hall was filled to capacity with family, friends and supporters of our graduates and friends of Jefferson College.
From just in front of the stage, this shot was taken as our graduates entered the hall and climbed the stairs to the stage. They were seated on the stage during the ceremony.
The Invocation for the 2011 Winter Commencement Ceremony was provided by Deborah H. Hunley, M.Div., Rector of the Christ Episcopal Church in Roanoke.
Following the Invocation, JCHS President Dr. Nathaniel L. Bishop stepped up to the podium to welcome everyone to the ceremony.
Dr. Bishop served as the event's master of ceremonies, introducing each speaker with flourish before they took the lectern.
Our first speakers provided greetings from the JCHS Board of Directors. Board Chair Mr. Stephen Musselwhite was joined by Vice Chair Ms. Ellen Wade to do the honors.
Our 2011 Winter Commencement Graduate Program Speaker was Luke Swatzyna, a graduate from the Physician Assistant Program.
Next was our Undergraduate Program Speaker, Conelius Powell, who received his degree in Biomedical Sciences at the ceremony.
Dr. Bishop then returned to the podium to introduce our Commencement Address Speaker.
Our 2011 Winter Commencement Address was given by Dr. Cynda A. Johnson, Dean and Founding President of the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine.
Dr. Johnson, spoke about whether it was better to "walk forward" or "walk backwards" as they embarked upon their careers as healthcare professionals. She also spoke to the important interprofessional collaborations that VTC and JCHS are now undertaking to ensure better care for patients for years to come.
After her address, Dr. Bishop presented Dr. Johnson with a gift to thank her for her time and wise words on behalf of the entire JCHS community.
JCHS Dean for Academic Affairs Dr. Lisa Allison-Jones then presented the recommendation of our 2011 graduates.
First up were our Master's graduates, who go through a hooding ceremony during Commencement. Here, Dr. David Haynes places a hood on one of our grads from the Master of Science in Occupational Therapy Program.
After hooding, each master's graduate then crossed the stage to receive their diploma and a hardy handshake from Dr. Bishop and Dr. Allison-Jones.
Then, our Master of Science in Physician Assistant grads were hooded. Here, we see Dr. Wilton Kennedy placing a hood on PA graduate Kirstin Brooke Harrell. We've featured Kirsten in many of these slideshows during her time at JCHS because she <I>loves</I> being in them so much. So, here's one last image of her at JCHS before she heads back to Texas!
Dr. Kennedy whispers some sage advice to a PA graduate as he places her hood during the Winter Commencement Ceremony.
Next, our undergraduate students received their diplomas and congratulations from College leadership. Before heading back to their seats, each posed for an official graduation photo with Dr. Bishop and Dr. Allison-Jones.
From just below stage right, we see a Bachelor of Science in Nursing graduate pose for her photo as Dr. Melody Sharp and Dr. Rebecca Greer (lower right) read the names of our Nursing grads.
After all of the diplomas were handed out, Dr. Bishop asked our new graduates to stand and move their tassels to signify that they were now alumni of Jefferson College of Health Sciences.
Now that our grads were considered alumni of the College, our final speaker was Melissa Ring, M.S.N., Vice President of the JCHS Alumni Association Board. She welcomed the new alumni to the association and encouraged them to stay involved in activities at JCHS.
Finally, the Ceremony ended with a Benediction provided by Deborah Hunley. <P>
All of us at JCHS want congratulate the 98 students who became alumni at the 2011 Winter Commencement Ceremony and we wish you all well in your professional and personal lives beyond our walls. Please stay in touch and come back to visit us at JCHS often!