PERRYSBURG TOWNSHIP, Ohio – Five hundred thirty-eight candidates for graduation, including 118 from the Findlay-area Campus, will receive their degrees during the 32nd annual Owens Community College Fall Commencement on Friday, Dec. 14. The commencement will begin at 7 p.m. in the Student Health and Activities Center on the College’s Toledo-area Campus.
President of The University of Findlay Dr. Katherine Fell will serve as the keynote speaker for the College’s Fall Commencement. Owens’ commencement ceremony is free and open to the public.
Fell became the 17th President of The University of Findlay on July 1, 2010. She has led the University community through an update of the 2005-15 Strategic Plan, adding emphases on international travel and service learning as shared experiences for the University’s students and sparking a re-examination of the core curriculum.
Fell is a member of the American Association of University Women and of Handbags That Help, a women’s philanthropic organization serving Hancock County. She served as keynote speaker for the American Association of University Women’s 2011 State Conference and was recognized as one of Ohio’s Most Powerful and Influential Women during the 2011 Ohio Diversity and Leadership Conference.
She previously served as Vice President for Advancement at Centenary College, Shreveport, La., where she had been the Chief Development Officer since 2000. Fell began her tenure at Centenary in 1986 as an Associate Professor of English. During her 14 years as a Professor, she developed an interdisciplinary major in communication, which grew to become one of the college’s strongest majors, and taught a variety of English courses.
A native of Stamps, Ark., she holds a bachelor of science in education in English, with a minor in speech, from Southern Arkansas University, Magnolia, and a master of arts in English from Louisiana Technical University in Ruston, La. She completed a doctorate in English from Texas A&M University at College Station. Fell and her husband, Roger, are the parents of six children.
Chelsey McMillan, a registered nursing student, has been selected as the Owens class representative and will address the graduates during Fall Commencement ceremony.
The Monroe, Mich., resident began her educational journey at Owens in January 2011 after working toward a nursing degree at another college.
“Right away at Owens, I noticed a supportive environment. I felt like the faculty wanted to see you succeed,” explained the 22-year-old McMillan.
In addition to the honor of being selected to represent her class, McMillan holds a 4.0 grade-point average at Owens and enjoys running marathons in her personal time.
According to her instructors, she is a student who always goes above and beyond in her studies, has a positive attitude and is outstanding in patient care.
“If it wasn’t for Owens, I wouldn’t have the chance at becoming a registered nurse. Owens did so much more than give me a degree, they gave me a chance to do what I love,” said McMillan.
She credits her success to the support and love of her family, as well as her boyfriend, Drew, and his family. She would like to thank the nursing faculty for its support, especially Julie Lohse, who McMillan described as her constant cheerleader.
One of McMillan’s favorite quotes is “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” Her speech will address the challenges she and the other graduates encountered on their own personal journeys.
After graduation, McMillan, a 2008 Jefferson High School graduate, envisions working as an Obstetrics Nurse and plans on pursuing her bachelor’s degree and eventually becoming a Certified Nurse Midwife or a Nurse Practitioner.
Owens Community College is an accredited two-year, state-assisted institution of higher education that has served Northwest Ohio since 1965. With a commitment to providing small classes, personal attention and unmatched affordability, the College serves the diverse academic needs of credit and non-credit students on the Toledo-area and Findlay-area campuses, as well as at the Arrowhead Park Learning Center in Maumee and the Learning Center at The Source in downtown Toledo. Owens offers associate degrees that transfer to baccalaureate degrees in the Arts and Sciences and over 130 technical program areas in Agriculture, Business, Health Sciences, Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, Skilled Trades, and Engineering and Transportation Technologies. Owens students also can earn the first two years of a bachelor’s degree with a smooth transfer to any area four-year college or university. For more information, visit www.owens.edu.