Record number of graduates walk at OTC Commencement

Record number of graduates walk at OTC Commencement

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Media Contact

Mark Miller
College Director of Communication 417.447.2655 millerm@otc.edu
Laura French
Coordinator of Public Information 417.447.2659 frenchl@otc.edu

A record 742 Ozarks Technical Community College graduates participated in Thursday night's commencement in JQH Arena on the Missouri State University Campus.

OTC conferred more than 2,000 certificates and degrees to graduates this year, which includes students who have completed their course work from the summer 2013 semester through this spring.

Attorney General Chris Koster was the featured speaker at the ceremony.

"You have placed a bet on yourself and that is a habit you will tap again and again," Koster said. "Your accomplishment tonight is a bet on your success and a better tomorrow."

OTC also paid special tribute to the late Special Agent Sgt. Joseph M. Peters, who received the College's 2014 Distinguished Alumni of the Year Award. Sgt. Peters was an OTC graduate who was killed from injuries sustained in a devastating series of blasts from suicide bombs and improvised explosive devices in a compound west of Kandahar, Afghanistan, while accompanying Army Rangers on a raid Oct. 6, 2013.

Sgt. Peters' father, Dennis, who is OTC's veterans service representative, received a standing ovation as he accepted the award from Dr. Hal Higdon, chancellor of Ozarks Technical Community College. He reminded students that men and women of the military helped them reach their goals.

"Others have made sacrifices to help you reach your dream and graduate tonight," Peters said. "Joseph's blood was shed to refresh the tree of liberty."