DCCC to Hold 50th Commencement Exercises

May 2, 2013 – Davidson County Community College will recognize graduating students during its 50th commencement exercises at 10 a.m. on May 11 on the Davidson Campus. Keynote speaker will be Dr. Dottie Burkhart, former DCCC faculty member who worked at the college for more than 40 years. 

The commencement ceremony will award 1,425 degrees and certificates, as well as one posthumous honorary degree to Christine Young Harris. Harris, a Davidson County native who lived in Lexington and passed away in 2011, bequeathed a generous $7.5 million to the college – the largest gift in North Carolina community college history.

“Christine Harris lived a quiet life, but we have since learned that she was very aware of our work at DCCC,” says Beth Parrott, chair of DCCC’s board of trustees. “She remained interested in the college after her son, Charles Harris, graduated in 1975. It is thought that Ms. Harris appreciated the availability of a local education for her son and considered the college an important community resource. Her support to the college is quite remarkable; the college and the community will ultimately benefit from her generosity.”

Harris is the seventh community leader to receive an honorary degree from DCCC. Others include B. E. Mendenhall Jr., who received the college’s first honorary associate degree in 1991. Honorary degrees have also been awarded to Edward C. Smith Sr. in 1992, Felix O. Gee in 1994, Richard Childress and Bob Timberlake in 2006, and George Allen Mebane IV in 2011.

About the Keynote Speaker

Burkhart, who began teaching at DCCC in 1969 – just a few years after the college opened its doors, touched the lives of many students with her dedication and determination to help educate her community. She graduated from West Davidson High School, and earned a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, as well as a master’s degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a doctorate from UNCG.

Burkhart’s dedication to students and the DCCC community was steadfast during her years on campus, as she taught English to students who were also her neighbors, fellow church members, high school classmates and their children and grandchildren. She embraced technological change in her classroom and enjoyed taking advantage of YouTube videos in her teaching.

Inclement Weather Plan

In case of inclement weather, the event will be held at the Richard Childress Racing Auditorium, located at 425 Industrial Drive in Welcome. If held here, each graduate will receive two rain tickets for guests to attend the ceremony. Guests without a rain ticket will not be able to enter. However, the ceremony will be available for viewing live via Internet at http://www.davidsonccc.edu/graduation-live.

For more commencement information, visit http://davidsonccc.edu/graduation.

Founded in 1963, Davidson County Community College is noted for its quality educational programs and services. As one of 58 institutions within the North Carolina Community College System, DCCC offers studies in more than 50 degree programs. A fully-accredited, multi-campus college, DCCC celebrates its 50th anniversary this year. It is committed to developing minds, inspiring imaginations, and preparing students for enhanced career and educational opportunities within a changing global environment. Visit Davidson County Community College on the Web at davidsonccc.edu.