05/10/2021

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Utah State University Tooele Holds Commencement for Class of 2021

 

Utah State University Tooele celebrated its class of 2021 with commencement exercises taking place on May 1 at Tooele High School. Comprising 76 individuals, the Class of 2021 earned 32 associate, 41 bachelor’s, two master’s degrees and one certificate.

USU Tooele celebrated graduates with a socially distanced gathering that was limited to graduates and two guests but included virtual elements. Jenn Cowburn, USU Tooele Associate Vice President, welcomed the graduates and guests.

“It is my honor to conduct this evening’s graduation event,” said Cowburn. “We are here for one reason – to celebrate the achievements of our students. Today’s gathering is a very important recognition of readiness to progress in life’s journey.”

In her message to the graduates she remarked that, through their hard work and dedication, they have proven they can achieve those things that can seem impossible.

“Education is about students, their goals, ambitions and knowledge,” said Cowburn. “Each year, our faculty, staff and students look to our list of graduates to identify a set of unique individuals to represent that year’s class. These individuals are challenged to reflect upon their individual journeys to find elements that will resonate with classmates and represent common elements on the path to graduation.”

Cowburn then introduced the student speaker, Sadie Garner. Garner received her Bachelor’s of Science degree in Nursing and is pursuing a goal to become a nurse practitioner.

“I would like to start by thanking my rock-star of a family for their sacrifice and sorry for anything that was said under the influence of nursing school,” said Garner. “When you have a family, as most of you know, your family sacrifices with you. I truly do not know what I would have done without them.”

Describing the challenges she had to go through with being a post-traditional student with a family and full-time job, Garner questioned herself at times and had feelings of defeat. However, with the support of her family she was able to continue and finish her degree.

“I used to wonder how I was ever going to pay my family back,” she said. “Well, I have the answer now. It was continuing to push forward. It was never giving up. It is my responsibility to push forward. To lead by example. To be the example.”

The commencement concluded with Cowburn introducing USU President Noelle E. Cockett, where she conferred the degrees virtually and the attending graduates received their diplomas.


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