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Iowa Lakes boasts biggest class

By Staff | May 14, 2011

Morgan Grabinoski, Armstrong-Ringsted alum, received her degree from Val Newhouse, college president. EDN photo by Michael Tidemann

Friday the 13th actually turned out to be a pretty lucky day for Iowa Lakes Community College graduates who crossed the stage before a packed gymnasium in Estherville Friday night.

“We’re extremely proud of each of you,” said Val Newhouse, college president, in addressing the graduates.

Jan Lund, board of trustees president, noted this was one of the biggest, if not the biggest, graduating class the college has ever had. Lund recounted an anecdote that there are those who make things happen, those who watch things happen and those who wonder what happened. She said she hoped all the graduates would be the ones to make things happen in the world.

Mark Gruwell, executive dean of instruction and development, asked Presidential Scholars to stand and Jolene Rogers, executive director of institutional advancement, presented Erika Tonsfeldt Volker with the Jim Hall Outstanding Alumni Award.

Rogers said Volker was director of Partnerships for Innovation, a statewide Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Consortium, serving six community colleges.

“You are an exceptional group of people,” Volker told graduates, adding that they would contribute tremendously to society.

Volker encouraged graduates to find a mentor and to pursue lifelong learning.

The audience also heard student addresses from John Lorenzen and Christine Vredenburg.