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April 27, 2016

Joe Verkennes, Director of Marketing and Communications
Monroe County Community College
1555 S. Raisinville Rd., Monroe, MI  48161
(734) 384-4207 (O), (419) 343-3063 (M) 



Gary Wilson to be Honorary Grand Marshal,
Jacqueline Corser to be Named Alumnus of the Year

MONROE, Mich. – Monroe County Community College graduates will be recognized during the 49th Annual Commencement Ceremony on Friday, April 29 at 7 p.m. in the Gerald Welch Health Education Building, located at 1555 S. Raisinville Rd.

Student addresses will be made by graduation candidates John L. Lothringer, Joshua A. Lothringer and Jeremy P. McGarry.
Gary Wilson, associate professor of art, has been awarded the position of honorary grand marshal for the ceremony.  This traditional honor is peer-awarded and bestowed upon a full-time faculty member who is held in high academic and personal esteem for his or her contributions to the institution.

Wilson is retiring from MCCC at the end of May, following 45 years of service.  He developed MCCC’s art history and ceramics curricula, as well as other courses in the field of art that have included yearly field trips to Chicago and Toronto, and has taught thousands of students, many of whom became working artists themselves.  Wilson supervised the college’s art collection, served on the Campus and Community Events Committee and on the board of directors for Christians in the Visual Arts, led numerous courses on study abroad trips, and designed an entire K-12 art curriculum for a private school in Sydney, Australia. 

He demonstrated his practical understanding of artistic craft by entering at least seven art shows every summer, earning many commissions for wall reliefs installed in churches, nursing homes, and hospitals in Monroe County, giving workshops and solo exhibits at the Toledo Artists Guild, Bethel College-St. Paul, Bethel College-Mishawaka, Taylor University, Asbury College, Trinity College, and Adrian College.  Wilson has won many awards, including a coveted People’s Choice Award, and was the on-camera authority in a seven-part film series in London, England, on the subject of God and creativity.

Other ceremony officials will include Dr. Joanna Sabo, professor of political science, as faculty marshal; Dr. Randell Daniels, vice president of student and information systems, as student marshal, and Dr. Grace Yackee, vice president of instruction, as platform party marshal and mistress of ceremonies.

At the ceremony, the 2016 Alumnus of the Year Award will be presented to local business owner and chef Jacqueline Corser.

To recognize and honor outstanding alumni who have made significant contributions to their career, community and the college, the MCCC Board of Trustees established the Alumnus of the Year Award in 1996.

Corser has been employed in the culinary industry for more than 30 years and is co-owner and chef at Public House Food and Drink in Downtown Monroe, an innovative restaurant inspired by classic taverns that serve the community with products from the community. 

She earned a certificate and associate degree in applied science in culinary skills and management from MCCC in 2013, a bachelor’s degree in applied science from Siena Heights University in 2014 and is continuing her education at Wayne State University, where she is pursuing a master’s degree in career and technical education.  She tackled higher education as an adult learner and has been a high achiever throughout her academic career – graduating with honors at both MCCC and SHU and maintaining a 4.0 average in graduate school at Wayne State University – and received a number of scholarships based on her academic achievements at MCCC. 

Corser is an active member of the River Raisin Institute and the Alumni Association Board at MCCC.  She was recently selected to be featured in the new "I AM MCCC" advertising campaign for MCCC.

Degrees will be conferred by MCCC President Dr. Kojo A. Quartey as the candidates are presented by Yackee. 

The Agora Chorale, conducted by Catherine Brodie and accompanied by Alyce Sangster, will perform “Like an Eagle,” arranged by Carl Strommen.  The College/Community Symphony Band, conducted by Mark Felder, will open the ceremony with Edward Elgar’s “Fanfare and Processional” (also known as “Pomp and Circumstance”) and conclude the program with “Fanfare and Recessional” by James Ployhar.

MCCC’s Board of Trustees includes:  Chair Joseph N. Bellino, Vice Chair Mary Kay Thayer, Secretary Dr. James E. DeVries, and trustees Lynette M. Dowler, Dr. Edward R. Feldman, Marjorie A. Kreps and Aaron N. Mason.

About Monroe County Community College

Founded in 1964, Monroe County Community College is a public, two-year institution supported by tax monies from Monroe County, educational funds from the State of Michigan and student tuition.  

The college’s mission is to enrich and transform lives by providing opportunities and excellence in higher education.  The Main Campus is located at 1555 South Raisinville Road, Monroe, Mich., 48161, with easy access to Toledo and Detroit.  The Whitman Center is located at 7777 Lewis Ave.,Temperance, Mich., 48182, near the Ohio-Michigan Border.  Detailed information about MCCC is available at