Western Nevada College said goodbye to its latest graduating class Monday.
More than 500 students received their diploma at the Marv Teixeira Pavilion in Carson City for a variety of associate and bachelor’s degrees. This year the college did something a little different and had graduates from both the Carson City and Fallon campuses together at one ceremony. Typically, each campus has their own ceremony but they to come together as for one commencement.
“We are one WNC family, let’s have one commencement,” said WNC President Chet Burton.
Along with the president of the school, multiple members from the Board of Regents and Tim Hoover, the student body president, spoke to the graduates and their families.
Hoover described the journey at WNC like a road trip; it was long, hard and hot, but there was good along the way, and it was all worth it for the final destination because you finally made it.
“Always keep your Western pride because it will be the rock you stand on for the rest of your life,” Hoover said.
With smiling faces and fists pumping in the air, the graduates strolled across the stage to collect their diploma from the Board of Regents.
“It feels so surreal (to graduate) all that hard work and no sleep paid off,” Fallon graduate Nilzara Atchison said. “It has been a rough journey, but such a blessing at the same time.”
One graduate felt especially grateful walking across the stage as the first person in her family to go to college.
“I feel very proud and happy,” Zaide Diaz-Sanchez said. “I am so fortunate to get this opportunity to get my degree.”
Diaz-Sanchez said that she hopes to be a role model and set an example for others. In the fall, she will be going to the University of Nevada, Reno where she hopes to get her doctorate in clinical sciences to one day help veterans with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
Before the graduates walked off, Burton had one last piece wish for the students.
“Though you have graduated it’s our hope you don’t leave this WNC family,” Burton said.