#MCCGrads2018: Student speaker candidates sought for commencement

MCC’s 2018 commencement ceremony will include a student speaker from the MCC-Longview campus.

Metropolitan Community College’s 2018 commencement ceremony in May will feature a student speaker in addition to the keynote speaker.

A student commencement speaker will be a first in MCC’s seven-year history of one ceremony for all five campuses, which started in 2012. Before that, each campus held its own graduation.

The 2018 student speaker must have attended MCC-Longview in Lee’s Summit and must complete his or her degree or certificate program in either December 2017 or May 2018.

Why Longview this year? The commencement committee decided to use the same schedule that applies to the processional of candidates for graduation. At this year’s ceremony, MCC-Longview students will lead the processional, and the student speaker will also come from Longview. (The speaker will come from MCC-Business & Technology in 2019; Blue River in 2020; Maple Woods in 2021; and Penn Valley in 2022.)

Robert Goltra, MCC director of student success, says the student speaker’s address “will recognize commencement as both an ending and a beginning, and an opportunity for graduates to reflect on what has been while anticipating new, perhaps unknown, challenges.”

Here’s the timeline to select this year’s student speaker:

Recommendation phase: Between now and Feb. 28, Longview students who qualify can be recommended by peers, faculty and staff. They can also self-nominate. Here’s the form, which you can also find in Campus Life & Leadership offices and at mcckc.edu/graduation. (The recommendation form includes a complete list of eligibility requirements for student speaker candidates.)

Application phase: In early March, eligible student nominees will be contacted. Those interested in continuing through the process will have until March 30 to complete application materials, including a draft of their 3-to-5-minute commencement speech.

Finalist phase: In early April, the student speaker selection committee will announce no more than six speaker finalists. After finalists are notified, they’ll be required to work with a faculty or staff speech coach. In late April, finalists will present their speeches to the selection committee.

The winning student speaker is expected to be notified by April 27.

MCC’s 2018 commencement ceremony will be at 7 p.m. Thursday, May 17, at Municipal Auditorium downtown.

Questions about the 2018 student commencement speaker process can be directed to Diana McElroy, dean of student development at MCC-Longview: Diana.McElroy@mcckc.edu.