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ACM Sets 53rd Commencement

May 12th, 2015 by WCBC Radio

Allegany College of Maryland will recognize the accomplishments of a large graduating class, about 340 students, when it holds 53rd commencement exercises Saturday, May 16, on the Cumberland campus.

Associate degrees and certificates will be awarded to members of the spring 2015 class at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. in the Physical Education Building. Students in allied health care programs take part in the afternoon ceremony while those in career and transfer programs attend the morning exercises.

The college’s president, Dr. Cynthia S. Bambara, opens the program with a welcome to the candidates for graduation and their guests, and Kim B. Leonard, chair of the ACM Board of Trustees, offers greetings.

Two students of high academic achievement will give the commencement address on behalf of their classmates.

Dawn Birgensmith of McConnellsburg, Pa., and Emma Goldhaber of Everett, Pa., will offer comments in the morning ceremony. Goldhaber will also provide the student perspective in the afternoon.

The speakers will congratulate fellow students on their successes, thank faculty and staff for guidance and praise family and friends for encouragement. They’ll also reflect on lessons learned, challenges confronted and resilience displayed in the achievements of their classmates.

Birgensmith, a culinary arts major, and Goldhaber, a multimedia technology student, both plan to enter ­the workforce after earning an associate degree in their career programs.

Birgensmith, who is married and the mother of five children, acted on a long-held desire to attend college once her family responsibilities would allow. She acted on her love for cooking when she chose to study culinary arts at ACM’s Gateway Center, home of downtown Cumberland’s popular Culinaire Café. Birgensmith has been hired by a dining management firm that provides food service to institutions. Her first posting will be a familiar one: Southern Fulton County High School, from which she graduated in 1996.

Goldhaber, who completed her secondary education through home-schooling, enrolled at the Bedford County Campus of ACM at age 16. After five semesters of courses through Early College in Everett, she enrolled in the multimedia technology program on the Cumberland campus. In a program that allowed her to create short films and commercials, Goldhaber discovered career joy in videography and set documentary film production as her career goal. Enrolling in film school is also a future possibility.

Introducing the two student speakers at commencement are John A. Bone, assistant professor and coordinator of multimedia technology, and David L. Sanford, instructor and coordinator of culinary arts.

Faculty members will announce the names of the graduates as they walk to receive their associate degrees and certificates. Dr. David Hinds, ACM vice president of instructional affairs, will present the candidates for graduation, and Leonard will award them their diplomas.

Serving as grand marshal of commencement exercises is Dr. Mark Shore, professor of mathematics. Steve Resh, professor of forestry, is the assistant grand marshal.

The West Virginia Brass Quintet, under the direction of Brian Plitnik, will perform a prelude to the exercises and the national anthem as well as a processional and recessional of graduates and college faculty and staff.

A reception for the new graduates, their guests and others involved in commencement follows each ceremony. These activities will be held in the College Center on the Cumberland campus.

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