Hartnell to award record number of degrees and certificates

Publish Date: 
May 25, 2018

Hartnell to award record number of degrees and certificates

Panthers are completing, transferring, and thriving


SALINAS, Calif. – Hartnell Community College District announces its 2018 Commencement ceremony tomorrow, Friday, May 25, 2018 at Rabobank Stadium at 6:00 p.m. This class  will be awarded 1,276 degrees and 906 certificates, based on preliminary numbers – the largest number to date.  Rabobank Stadium is located at 175 Maryal Drive in Salinas. Tickets are required.

“I look forward to personally congratulating these students during the commencement ceremony and celebrating their accomplishments with their families,” said Superintendent/President, Dr. Willard Lewallen.

This year, Hartnell College will award over 1,200 degrees and over 900 certificates. Among the graduates, 14 are valedictorians and 434 are graduating with honors. Bianca N. Ojeda will give the Valedictorian Address on behalf of her peers.

“These students have demonstrated tremendous tenacity, perseverance, and grit in achieving their goals,” added Dr. Lewallen.

This year’s Commencement speaker will be Distinguished Alumnus 2018, Rafael Vazquez. His message will inspire attendees and graduates to follow their dreams no matter the circumstances. He is currently a Municipal Judge for Monterey County.

The Class of 2018 is composed of individuals with grit and resilience. Some fun facts that Hartnell knows of include:

  • 644 Women Graduates/Candidates

422 Male Graduates/Candidates

  • Mother, Son, and Daughter Graduates

Lauren Umagat, Brandon Umagat, Damaris Umagat

  • ​Husband and Wife Graduates/Candidates

Cesar Fuentes and Brenda Fuentes

  • Youngest Graduate: Age 19

Oldest Graduate: Age 65

  • Celebrating their birthday at the ceremony:

5 Graduates/Candidates

For media inquiries and access to the ceremony, contact Esmeralda Montenegro Owen at 831-206-9422. Journalists and video-journalists will have access to Rabobank Stadium using their own media passes.

Hartnell Community College District – established in 1920

The Hartnell CCD serves over 17,000 students annually through its main campus in Salinas, the Alisal Campus in East Salinas, the King City Education Center, and various outreach learning centers throughout the Salinas Valley. Hartnell College, a Hispanic Serving Institution, provides associate degree and certificate programs, workforce-training, courses in basic skills, and prepares students for transfer to four-year colleges and universities. Hartnell College is recognized for its innovative public and private partnerships that support world-class education for STEM, career technical education, fine and performing arts, humanities/social sciences, nursing/healthcare, and athletics. We are proud to be the winners of the 2015 Innovation Award for CSin3 – a Computer Science bachelor’s degree in three years.  We are growing leaders through opportunity, engagement, and achievement. For more about Hartnell CCD, visit www.hartnell.edu.                                                      ###