McMaster Continuing Education graduates encouraged to “light a fire in others”

On November 9 Lorraine Carter, Director of McMaster University Centre for Continuing Education, offered her congratulations at the annual graduation ceremony attended by 160 graduates.

Addressing a crowd of 160 attending graduates and more than 440 guests, Lorraine Carter, Director of McMaster University Centre for Continuing Education (CCE) and Master of Ceremonies for the evening, offered her congratulations at the annual graduation ceremony on November 9 at LiUNA Station in Hamilton.

“Your accomplishments are the result of hard work and personal will,” she said. “You have balanced competing work, family and community responsibilities, and dug deep to find the resilience and determination necessary to achieve your educational and career goals.”

Carter also asked for a round of applause as she acknowledged the parents, spouses, children, friends and colleagues who attended the ceremony as well as the 363 additional graduates who could not attend.

“You have had many supporters along the way—individuals who extended practical and moral support and possibly held you up when you thought you couldn’t take another step in your learning journey.”

Rita May Graham, a graduate of McMaster CCE in the Diploma in Human Resources Management class of 2015, returned to address the class of 2017 and offered her advice as they move forward in their careers.

“When you leave here today, you will be surrounded by opportunities and I encourage all of you to say ‘yes’,” Graham said. “After all, many of you are sitting here today because at some point you said ‘yes’. You said ‘yes’ to learning new things, ‘yes’ to developing yourselves, and ‘yes’ to the many challenges that were presented to you along the way.”

Sheila Sammon, Director of Community Engagement and Professor Emerita, School of Social Work, expressed her thoughts on the power of education and encouraged students to share their knowledge with their communities.

“Education is not simply about the acquisition of knowledge—it’s about being more active and engaged citizens,” she said. “Education can, and should, light a fire in us. And you can light a fire in others.”

During the ceremony, McMaster CCE presented awards to 20 students for their academic excellence in the fields of Accounting, Business Administration, Human Resources Management, Marketing, Public Relations, Web Design, Addiction Studies, Case Management, Clinical Research, Health Informatics, Health Information Management and Social Services.

Jon Neumann, graduating with a Certificate in Metallurgy of Iron and Steel, was the recipient of the ArcelorMittal Dofasco Award for Academic Excellence.

Graduate Marvelous Muchenje was recognized for demonstrating inspiring perseverance, commitment and dedication to excellence through exceptionally difficult circumstances while completing her studies. She was the recipient of this year’s McMaster Association of Part-time Students (MAPS) Centennial Award.

Business Administration and Marketing instructor Mark Gregory received the MAPS Instructor Award for his high degree of support and enthusiasm for teaching inside and outside the classroom.

Mike Michalski, instructor for courses in finance and accounting, was recognized with the CCE Instructor Award for his eagerness to enhance learning experiences for students.

Tamara Bates was this year’s recipient of the CCE Appreciation Award recognizing her unwavering guidance and support in governance, policy and process at the University, as well as her knowledge and leadership while serving on the Certificates and Diplomas Committee to bring forward new programs for academic approval.

Don Bridgman, President of the McMaster Alumni Association concluded the evening by welcoming the new graduates to the McMaster family.

“Collectively over 190,000 McMaster graduates have been granted degrees, and received certificates, diplomas and recognition for their accomplishments. They are spread out across the world where today they can be found in over 130 countries,” he said. “Today you join their ranks, having been trained by a great university—one that regularly ranks amongst the top 100 in the world.”

Thousands of students participate in professional and continuing education programs at McMaster CCE every year. To create an individual study plan, or to register for classes, visit or call 905-525-9140 x24321.

Recipients of the Awards of Academic Excellence in Certificate and Diploma Programs

Certificate in Advanced Accounting Karen Dandy

Diploma in Accounting Jing Zhou

Certificate in Business Administration Scott Finlayson

Diploma in Business Administration Natalie Hildebrant

Diploma in Human Resources Management Lisa Marie Dennie

Diploma in Marketing Carla Dawson

Certificate in Public Relations Joanna Williams

Diploma in Public Relations Management Matt Horner

Certificate in Web Design Debbie Lawlor

Diploma in Web Design and Development Consuelo Cachay

Addiction Careworker Diploma Judy Barnes

Addiction Studies Certificate Amanda Meier

Certificate in Case Management Nai-Yun Ho

Clinical Research Associate Certificate Sandy Szeto

Diploma in Health Informatics Kimberly Fay Ramirez

Diploma in Health Information Management Michelle Anne Urbanc

Recipients of the Continuing Education Annual Prize, Social Services

Addiction Careworker Diploma Philip Kuva

Addiction Studies Certificate Kaitlin Littlechild

Certificate in Case Management Tiiu Jaanusson

Clinical Research Associate Certificate Enas Abouelkheir

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