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Judge Encourages Graduates to Dream
On Sunday afternoon at 1:45 p.m., 58 Lane College seniors, walking two at a time, slowly proceeded along the aisle to their seats in the J.F. Lane Gymnasium on the Lane College campus to begin the Summer Commencement Convocation. Acknowledging cheers and applause from well-wishers, the graduates solemnly made their way to their reserved seats to patiently await the bestowing of their degrees in the Arts and Sciences. They entered the arena as promising students. They exited as proud Alumni!
At the beginning of the program, Lane alumnus William Graves, II, stirred the crowd with his moving rendition of Give Us This Day. Thereafter, Interim President Glenn Vaulx told the assembled crowd that Graves and Vaulx’s son and daughter-in-law, Brian and Adrian, sang together in the Lane College Choir in the early ‘90’s, and spontaneously requested that they render a song for the audience. As if on cue, Graves began to play the melody to the song How Excellent, and Adrian Vaulx took to the stage and sang her heart out. Graduates and audience members alike were moved to tears.
In an inspiring speech, Division III Circuit Court Judge Nathan Pride invoked the memories of Mrs. Rosa Parks, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and Presidents John Kennedy and Ronald Reagan. He told the graduates that taking a stand on principle will yield good results. He asked graduates to dream big, live their dreams, and be free. He further admonished graduates to ask not what Lane College and their country can do for them, but to ask what they can do for Lane College and America. Finally, as President Reagan told the General Secretary of the Communist Party and President of the Soviet Union Mikhail Gorbachev, Pride told the students to “tear down the walls” of oppression and hindrance that limits one’s fulfillment of life’s potential.
Following Pride’s speech, Natasha Alexander was recognized as the Highest Ranking Senior, with a 3.8 grade point average.
At the conclusion of the program, Lane College Board of Trustees Chair Lawrence L. Reddick, III, accompanied by present and former Trustees, presented to President Vaulx a beautiful plaque that recognized his service to the College following the death of Dr. Wesley Cornelious McClure and prior to the selection of newly selected President Logan Hampton. Roses were also presented to Vaulx’s wife, First Lady Ruby Vaulx.