Corsicana Daily Sun, Corsicana, Texas

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May 7, 2014

Cook, Barton to address Navarro graduates

Corsicana — Three commencement ceremonies will mark the end of the 2013-2014 academic year at Navarro College this week, with graduation exercises slated for both Friday and Saturday.

The college will hold two ceremonies in Corsicana on Friday — at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. — in the K and Ida Wolens Special Events Center. The 10 a.m. ceremony is for students that have earned an Associate in Arts degree, Associate in Arts Teaching degree, or an Associate in Science degree. At the 2 p.m. ceremony, students earning an Associate in Appliance Science Degree and Certificates of Completion will be recognized.

On Saturday, the college will hold a commencement ceremony at 1 p.m. at Midlothian High School for Ellis County students who are graduating or earning certificates.

In addition to comments from college leaders and student representatives, two special guest speakers will take part in the graduation ceremonies. State Rep. Byron Cook (R-Corsicana) is scheduled to speak to graduates at the Friday ceremonies in Corsicana, while U.S. Rep. Joe Barton (R-Ennis) will address graduates in Midlothian on Saturday.

Cook said his message to the graduates will be about a strategy he hopes they find useful in life.

“I hope to give them some good ‘common sense’ food for thought — something they can relate to,” Cook said.

Cook is marking a special occasion himself at the commencement — it was 40 years ago this month, in 1974, that he graduated from Navarro College.

“There were 103 of us that graduated 40 years ago,” Cook said. “Look at where we were 40 years ago, and where we are today ... it’s amazing.”

Barton is a resident of Ellis County, where the college has seen huge growth with its programs in Waxahachie and Midlothian. His message will speak to optimism and opportunity.

"I believe that America is still the land of hope and opportunity and my message will reflect that,” Barton said. “The men and women listening to me speak on Saturday are our community's next generation of leaders. It may sound cliché, but it is the truth. I want them to walk out of the ceremony, diplomas in hand, knowing that with a good education and hard work anything is possible."

Additional seating for the Corsicana ceremonies will be available in Dawson Auditorium, with a video feed from the ceremonies will be shown.

The Navarro College Alumni Association will host a reception for graduates, families and guests following the Friday ceremonies in the courtyard adjacent to the Albritton Administration building. In the event of bad weather, the receptions will be moved into the Gooch One-Stop Student Center.


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