On to JSU Graduation

On to JSU Graduation

October 20, 2019 0 By Stanley Isaacs


(graduation music) [Male speaker] Attention. Salute pledge. [Everyone In Unison]
I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and
justice for all [Male Speaker] Let us pray. [Young Male Speaker
Heavenly father, bless us who are
graduating with your grace. Bless us who hope in our future. Help us to remember that we are have learned. Please ask. Please, we ask those
things in your Jesus name. We pray, amen. [Everyone In Unison] Amen. [Young Male Speaker]
And sorry, I’m nervous. (laughing) Please be seated. That’s quite all right, we all are nervous when
we get in front of people. And I’ve done this a lot, but I still get
little butterflies. Welcome to all of you to this
very special occasion today. Where we are recognizing
some very important people. For their accomplishments, for their dedication, for their perseverance, and for the growth and the gifts that the good Lord has
given each one of them. And we join all of you in support and hearty
congratulations or all of them. It would be a mistake, if I did
not say thank you to Miss Carr and all of
you as faculty members and friends and family who have invested
in this program. You have provided support
to these young adults. You have been steadfast in strengthening them
and encouraging them and this is a monumental day; actually in the life of our
institution, our university, and in the lives of
these young adults. And so as Dean of the
School of Education, I congratulate all of them and thank all of you. Good morning. My name is Dr. Janet Bavonese and I’m the associate dean
of the School of Education, and I would like to thank
everyone for being here. I would especially like to
honor our graduates today. Please give them a
round of applause. applause) Four years ago, Dr. Cynthia Connor and
Miss Lynetta Owens, who was on our
faculty at the time, came to me with an idea. An idea that is
in fruition today. The idea was to write a grant to create a program that
has never existed before at Jacksonville
State University. The program was On To JSU. We worked very hard, we did a lot of research, we had a vision, and we followed it through. And I am so proud to
be standing here today honoring these young people. Dr. Connor and I, along with Karen Carr, and Dr. Shawna Smith and Dean Turner are very proud of all five of these
unique individuals. In just a few minutes, you’re going to get a treat of hearing all of the unique
things they have done. The past two years
on our campus, we have seen remarkable growth, we have seen independence, and we have seen the blossoming of absolutely unique
and wonderful talents and personalities of
these five young adults. This is what our
work is all about. Being able to
support and inspire young adults to fulfill
their potential. We’re very happy today to have this ceremony. We’re very proud that
you’re joining us. And I am looking forward
to what comes next. for these remarkable
young adults. Thank you for being here. (applause) The program is designed so that students with
intellectual disabilities can become college students and have an experience with When we wrote the grant, it said with their
non disabled peers, but we’ve changed that to with their degree seeking peers. ‘Cause our students
are very able, have lots of abilities, but they’re getting
a certificate and not a degree, that’s
the only difference other than they
learn differently, we all learn differently. Couple of things I wanna do before I introduce
the graduates. I wanna thank some
people, first of all, the entire JSU family. From registration, admissions; if I started naming everybody, DSS, housing, everybody, the Jack Hopper diner, dining hall, everybody
that’s involved that has touched the
lives of these people and who’s lives these
people have touched. Also, I’d like to
recognize Walmart, as being our partner, for our work experience, and Chick-fil-A here
in Jacksonville. Chick-fil-A at the
TMB and Walmart in Jacksonville. Thank you for being a part of us and believing in our students, and giving them the opportunity to show what they can do. Also, there’s a
group of people here, over to my left, who are the mentors, they’re peer mentors. These JSU degree
seeking students have gone to class with them, have had study
sessions with them, have gone to social
events with them, athletic events and just
hanging out with them to have fun like
college students do. Another group here today, are our teacher candidates, over to my right. And they’re from the Collaborative Special
Education Program in the School of Education and they’ve been
very instrumental in helping our program
be successful as well. So, I’m going to
ntroduce the graduates and let them come tell
you what they’ve learned. First, is Courtney Banks. applause) Good morning My name’s Courtney Banks. Cooking skills. I cooking breakfast
for momma at home and then work at Walmart. I do cleaning, sweeping and on the computer lab. And then exercise. And then some money and some games. Spend it on the games. [Female Voice]
Thank you Courtney. (applause) Good morning. My name is Demontrey Graham. Last semester I took
learning skills class. It’s like teaching us
how to write and read and certain stuff. I took piano last semester. Learned how to play piano, which I’m still working on that. I’m a substitute
teacher aide, at Calhoun County Schools. I work with students
that have disabilities. I am a full time teacher aide at UCP center on Fort Mcclellan. I work with Pre-K. And we went to the Beautiful
Cafe in Gadsden, Alabama last semester, which
is our field trip. We went to the
movies last semester. Went to go see A Wrinkle In
Time. Miss Carr took us. And I took Zumba
class last semester. And I did my interneship
at Chick-fil-A. And we went bowling. Pell City. And I forgot the name of it. And it’s not on here, but I got a new car. (laughing) And a job to pay for it. And now I can focus on
getting my own place, which you see over
here the money thing. And I took computer class. I mean, not computer class, photography, I took pictures. And like I said, computer class. And that’s all. Thank you. (applause) Hey everybody. My name is Cyrus Lewis. And I live in Sparkman Hal
with Severe as a suite mate. And my first class
here was sewing class. I learned about sewing, some stuff I never knew. How to sew and everything. I ride the Gamecock
Express to get my blood test and go to Walmart, Subway, or
Taco Bell My favorite place
to eat here is TMB. I get sushi at Freshens and
smoothies and stuff. And I go to events with Severe
and Andreas to support them If I’m here we can go If I’m here we go to the church We go to the church
to feed the homeless. (applause) Hi everyone. My name’s Meaghan Rang. And I used to live in the
apartments at Eagle Pointe. And I made a
serving dish out of clay. And I used to work at
Fitzpatrick as a RA assistant. And I have a job at Walmart. and I do all the
maintenance stuff. Thank you. (applause) Good morning everyone. – [Everyone InUnison] Good morning. My name is Severe Threats
and I live in Sparkman Hall with my roommate, Cyrus and.. Last year I took class like stage makeup, drawing one and drawing two, and I take aerobics. And this year, I’ve been
taking oil painting. I was afraid I don’t
know how to use it so, it’s okay. (laughing) I learned how to use
oil painting so, yes. And. Yes. And I got a job. I got my own office upstairs at Ramona Wood. And most exciting thing, is, Coach R.J. wants me
to paint Cocky on the cheerleaders door And Cocky was
excited to see it. (laughing) Yes. And I’m so happy
to be here at JSU. Thank you. (applause) Courtney Banks. (applause) Demontrey Graham. (applause) Cyrus Lewis. (applause) Meaghan Rang. (applause) (laughing) Severe Threats. (applause) Graduates, if you will please rise. Take your tassel and
move it to the left. (applause) Congratulations! (applause)