May 24, 2022

Waubonsee Voices: Mission accomplished

Since 1968, Waubonsee has awarded 28,429 associate degrees, and I invite you to think of this number in terms of something so much more valuable. Each degree represents an individual with a unique experience and life story unlike any other ever lived. Every Waubonsee graduate who crosses their finish line – graduating and receiving their diplomas – is the promise of tomorrow, a seed of hope for the future. The rewards of earning a degree will last a lifetime. Your experiences at Waubonsee will shape you forever.

When I think of the Class of 2022, I am in awe of the unlimited, untapped potential you possess. You, graduates, have toiled to overcome the conditions of a global pandemic. You have navigated obstacles and barriers once believed impossible, and you have risen to the occasion of the future of learning and working. With steadfastness, resolve and determination, you have discovered new ambitions and set yourselves to shape your future and make a difference.

The Class of 2022 is brave, resilient and bold. They have solved tomorrow’s problems with today’s technology and paved new paths to achieve their goals. Many 2022 graduates will excel in industries and fields that have yet to be created. These graduates are on the brink of enormous change, and they have demonstrated their ability to overcome extraordinary challenges.

At Waubonsee, we celebrate and applaud our 877 graduates who are members of our Class of 2022. Of that number, 20 will graduate with two degrees. Forty-two students earned Presidential Honors with a 4.0 grade-point average and 275 earned Academic Honors with a GPA between 3.5 and 3.9. Three students will graduate from Waubonsee’s Honors Program, having completed 15 hours of honors courses with an overall 3.5 GPA in all courses and a 3.0 GPA in all honors courses. The youngest graduate is 17, and the oldest is 63. The average GPA of this group of students is 3.26, a tremendous collective accomplishment.

In addition to celebrating our graduating Class of 2022 in fulfilling their mission at Waubonsee Community College, we also pause and recognize our dedicated and committed faculty and staff who have helped to make these opportunities possible. To you, I say well done, mission accomplished. Thank you for providing a rich economic, social and academic hub where students with diverse backgrounds can discover new passions, share knowledge and embrace diversity. I appreciate all of our Waubonsee employees who help us accomplish the critical mission to serve our local community through powerful classes, programs and services.

We do what we do every day because we genuinely believe education is the key that can unlock doors of greater possibilities for our students, our communities and the world. Here at Waubonsee, we remain focused on student success and helping our students go as far as their skills, education, tenacity and perseverance will carry them.

I congratulate all this year’s graduates and their families. Every exam you passed and every assignment you completed have built your perseverance and character, bringing you one step closer to achieving your dreams. Mission accomplished, you inspire us all, Class of 2022!

I look forward to celebrating you at Waubonsee’s 54th commencement ceremonies Saturday, May 14. Friends, family members and community members who are unable to attend commencement can tune into the ceremonies via the college’s livestream, which will begin just before each ceremony.

To access the livestream and for more information about commencement, visit waubonsee.edu/graduation.

• Christine J. Sobek is president of Waubonsee Community College.