At the 104th College of the Ozarks commencement ceremony held May 8, a record number of bachelor's degrees were conferred to 321 students.
Congresswoman Jo Ann Emerson, the first Republican woman elected to the U.S. Congress from Missouri, gave the commencement speech, according to a news release.
Emerson also received an honorary doctorate of public service from the college.
In her speech, Emerson noted the fine line between work and happiness.
“We have the ability to work as hard as we want - funny how no one factors that into the pursuit of happiness,” she said, according to the release. “But, the truth is that they are inseparable.”
Other honorary doctorates were presented to:
- Marilyn Graves, dean of the college, for 40 years with the college; and
- C of O Vice President Howell Keeter, for 40 years with the college.
Janice Williams, director of the college nursing program, received the Mildred Letton Wittick Professional Achievement Award, which recognizes faculty for professional accomplishments such as research, publications, performance and creative productions. Since coming to C of O in 2005, Williams has led the college's bachelor's of science in nursing program and its simulation learning center.
James Buchan, assistant professor of computer science, was received the Eugene Charles Wittick Teaching Excellence award, which recognizes teaching ability and making an impact on students' lives, according to a separate news release.[[In-content Ad]]