POPLARVILLE, MS (WDAM) - This is a news release from Pearl River Community College
Gov. Phil Bryant told graduates of Pearl River Community College to follow the example of Superman as they make their way in the world.
Bryant, the first of his family to graduate from college, spoke today as almost 400 students participated in the first graduation to be held in Marvin R. White Coliseum on the Poplarville campus since Hurricane Katrina destroyed the old facility.
He reminded the graduates and their families that Superman fought against adversity, including kryptonite which could destroy his powers.
"Kryptonite exists in all our lives," Bryant said. "We just have to figure out what it is and stay away from it." The governor paid tribute to Hattiesburg Police Officers Benjamin Deen and Liquori Tate who were killed in the line of duty on May 9, saying they dedicated their lives to good.
"They showed us what heroes could be," Bryant said. "Heroes are also teachers, coaches, moms and dads. The world needs more heroes that we can look up to and emulate. Find your heroes today. Find your true inner strengths. You have the capacity to do great things."
"There's a little bit of Superman in us all," he said, opening his gown to reveal a Superman shirt.
The ceremony was open to the approximately 1,000 students who completed requirements for a certificate of proficiency, an associate in arts degree or an associate in applied science degree between June 2014 and last week.
"I'm on top of the world," said Ian Cole Parkman of Columbia, who earned an electrical technology degree. Dr. William Lewis, PRCC president, congratulated the graduates and told them they are well-prepared for the world of work or more education.
"Graduates, we want you to know how very proud we are of you," Lewis said. "Please do not forget that education is a lifelong process. We wish for you much success and the best that life has to offer.
Lewis also asked those in attendance to remember the sacrifices of Tate and Deen, whose wife is a student in the PRCC associate degree nursing program.