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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                       8/6/2019

                                                                                                            (By Lisa Garrett)

ANDERSON --- In his first speech as newly-elected President of Tri-County Technical College, Galen DeHay urged the 2019 summer graduates when change presents itself in their lives and their work, to embrace it in a positive way.

The College awarded 348 degrees, diplomas and/or certificates during the summer commencement held August 1 at the Anderson Civic Center.

DeHay, who just completed his first month as president of Tri-County, told graduates he, also, will participate in a graduation ceremony next week when he will receive his Ph.D. in Educational Leadership from Clemson University. 

“As a fellow graduate, I know something about your journey.  Even though I have been on faculty and in various administrative positions at TCTC for 20 years, I have learned a great many new things during my short tenure as President.  So in preparing my remarks today, I thought carefully about what message I wanted to share with you that might be useful as you look ahead to the future.  I thought about what attitude, what skill has helped me the most this past month and throughout my career. Without any doubt, it’s the courage to embrace change and the unknown,” he said.

He added:  “Change often involves facing fears, taking risks and getting out of our comfort zone. Embracing change takes courage.”

He emphasized his point by telling the graduates about former student T.J. Earle, who is “a shining example of dealing with change in a courageous way.”

No one – not even close family members -- knew T.J. didn’t earn a high school diploma back in 1997.   It was a source of pain and shame that weighed on T.J. over the years, as he worked minimum-wage jobs to support his family and struggled with self-doubt.  

He had dropped out of high school while being one credit short of graduating from Pendleton High School.  He was a good student, earning A’s and B’s and was a member of the basketball team with the dream of playing on a college team after graduation.  He had plans for college.  But he went from honor roll student to high school dropout, T.J. says, by “being complacent.”

 “When he reached his mid-30s, T.J. realized he needed to change. He realized he needed to take steps to move forward. He’ll be the first to tell you, it took a lot of courage,” said DeHay.

After years of bouncing around and merely existing on minimum-wage jobs in restaurants and temp agencies, T.J. went to Adult Ed, completed his GED in record time, and enrolled in I-BEST, is a one-semester program that allows students to explore careers in manufacturing and learn basic skills for entry-level manufacturing jobs.

Within 365 days, T.J.’s life was totally different. 

He earned a TCTC certificate in Manufacturing Production and had multiple job offers. He started working at Borg Warner and began his new life. He has been climbing the ladder to success, and today he works at BASF.

“T.J.’s story clearly shows the relationship between courage and change; between moving forward and being left behind,” DeHay said.  

“Business, industry, and virtually every other organization function in an environment that is continuously changing.  New technology, innovations, mergers, acquisitions, takeovers -- if these organizations accept the status quo, they will wither and die,” he said.

“Thriving organizations and our communities need people who have a curious attitude and are willing to embrace change.  That includes Tri-County Technical College,” he said.

“We have incredibly talented individuals in our organization who are willing to embrace change -- who want to get better, so that we, in turn, can better serve you.”

Tri-County has the highest student success rate, the highest transfer rate, and the highest graduation rate among all sixteen colleges in the South Carolina Technical College System.  The College ranks in the top 5 percent of the country in successful student transfers to four-year colleges and universities.

“As you graduate today, and as I graduate next week, we have a clear directive  --  to get better and to continue learning and adapting.  Bring your best game, and have the courage to seek and embrace change,” he said.

Following the speech, President DeHay and other College officials presented degrees, diplomas and certificates to the following graduates:



Andrew James David Alewine, Mechatronics Technology; Kennedy Ann Barker, Business Administration; Morgan Elizabeth Baysden, Medical Assisting; Kimberlee Brooklyn Black, Associate in Science; Andrew Boisvert, Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning Technology; John Henry Boiter, Industrial Electronics Technology; Monica Anesha Bolden, Practical Nursing; Rebecca Danielle Borders, Associate in Science; Benjamin Levi Bowen, Mechatronics Technology; Jenna Alyssa Boye, Associate in Science; Alexus Keyerra Breazeale, Expanded Duty Dental Assist; Blake Thomas Burdette, HVAC Apprentice; Dustin Dakota Cape, Management; Fernando David Carrillo-Rosales, Criminal Justice Technology; Jeremy Quinn Catron, CNC Programming and Operations; Kassidy Nicole Cobb, Expanded Duty Dental Assist; Jasmine Cowan, Practical Nursing; Kristen Deanne Crawford, Administrative Office Technology; Amber Noel Darby, Practical Nursing; Jennifer Dianne Dodd, Business Administration; James H. Dyar, III, Associate in Science; Jonathon David Elliott, Manufacturing Management and Leadership; Tanonka Nikel Geer, Practical Nursing; Nicholas Larry Goolsby, Associate in Science; Joseph Nance Greene, Associate in Science; Kamariah Breonna Hammonds, Associate in Arts; James Olander Hatten, Jr., HVAC Apprentice; Roger Dale Herron, Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning Technology; Daniel Scott Hilliard, Computer Technology; Shanna Marie Hudson, Medical Assisting; Anna Riley Hulme, Associate in Science; Robert Anthony Johnston, Computer Technology; Micah Edward Joyner, Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning Technology; William B. Kahaly, Associate in Arts; Matthias Eric Knibbe, Associate in Science; Katja Maria Lehmann, Criminal Justice Technology; William Chadwick Leonard, Intro to Manufacturing Management Technology; Tykia Rakeisha Littles, Surgical Technology; David Vincent Mahoney, Jr., Industrial Electronics Technology; Michael Benjamin Mance, Media Arts Production; Kurishia Luwona Martin, Associate in Science; Jamie Alicia McDowell, Business Foundations; Jeremy David McDuffie, Industrial Welding; Brittany Paige Bailey McKee, Administrative Office Technology - Medical Emphasis; Justin Cordell Meredith, Associate in Science; Amy Renee Merritt, Business Administration - Management Emphasis; Brittany Ciera Miller, Surgical Technology; Felicia Hope Mullinax, Associate in Science; Larisa P. Nechitaylo, Associate in Science; Angel Jovita Orta, Administrative Office Technology - Medical Emphasis; Michael Chase Owens, Associate in Arts; Daniela Alejandra Paez Villamizar, Business Administration; Kajal N. Patel, Medical Assisting; Sydney Paige Phillips, Associate in Arts; Sean-Michael Stephen Pitoniak, Engineering Design Technology; Sierra Lynn Pitts, Expanded Duty Dental Assist; Angel Elizabeth Hope Porter, Associate in Arts; Joshua Gregory Pruitt, Media Arts Production; Mickey Lee Ricketts, Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning Technology; Gabriella Marie Romo, Surgical Technology; Lindsay Nicole Scott, Expanded Duty Dental Assist; Hannah Carmen Shirley, Accounting; Olusewa Eniola Shongotosin, Practical Nursing; Jay Roland Shump, Business Administration - Management Emphasis; Emily Hunter Strickland, Associate in Science; Josiah Deandrous Sullivan, Associate in Science; Jackson Ray Taylor, Mechatronics Technology; Raven Latrice Thomas, Administrative Office Technology; Michael John Trela, Associate in Science; Kayla Michelle Vangieson, Associate in Science; Morgan McClain Waldrop, Associate in Science; Theodore Jason Warneka, Mechatronics Technology; Chandler Drake Wells, Associate in Science; Hillary Shanice Williams, Associate in Science; Elizabeth Kallin Williford, Medical Assisting; and Emily Elizabeth Woodall, Associate in Science


Grant Drake Acker, General Technology - Welding; Curtis Allen Eaton, General Technology - Welding; Brandon Michael Goodson, Jr., Associate in Science; Shamona Lasha Jordan, Expanded Duty Dental Assist; Weimin Li, Associate in Science; Jackson Howard Locke, Mechatronics Technology; Amanda Jane Mack, Expanded Duty Dental Assist; Eric Michael Mansfield, General Technology - Welding; Jamie Nicole Moore, Associate in Science; Lanee Morgan Mullen, Associate in Science; David Clarke Richey, III, Industrial Electronics Technology; Chelsea Renae Sterling-Anderson, Associate in Arts; and Max Jordan Taylor, Associate in Arts


Stephanie R. Amaker, Business Administration - Management Emphasis


Kristina L. Burdette, Expanded Duty Dental Assisting; Kinsley Brianna Norris, Administrative Office Technology; Randall Colton Robinson, Mechatronics Technology; and Cadi Elizabeth Watt, Expanded Duty Dental Assisting


Steven D. Burroughs, General Technology - Welding; Tanner Bryce Harbin, Practical Nursing; and Ryan J. Jeanes, Associate in Science


Annslee Rae Hart, Expanded Duty Dental Assist; Sarah Elizabeth Rennhack, Associate in Science; Matthew Browder Sanders, Associate in Arts; Timothy Scott Sanders, Industrial Electronics Technology; Judah Israel Slack, Manufacturing Production I; Jonathan Michael Stewart, Industrial Welding; Robert Blair Stutts, General Technology - Welding; and Vickie Jean Watt, Administrative Office Technology - Medical Emphasis


Chaz Jayson Bruce, Associate in Arts; Nathan B. Bullock, CNC Programming and Operations; Coco Carter, Practical Nursing; Daniel Thomas Cooper, II, Mechatronics Technology; Jaime Elizabeth Cooper, Associate in Arts; Kelly R. Parham, Veterinary Technology; Mary Ashly Sikes, Associate in Arts; and Landon Joshua Watt, Manufacturing Production I


Lucy A. Dunn, Associate in Science; Meleigha Rebecca Anne Kelley, Expanded Duty Dental Assisting; Justin Tyler Ricketts, CNC Programming and Operations; and Victoria Ashley Southerland, Associate in Science


Airk Thorne Grace, Manufacturing Production I; Bernard Markiz Harris, Mechatronics Technology; Susan Jones Jouglard, Medical Assisting; Jonathan Lee McIntyre, CNC Programming and Operations; Candace Mischelle Patterson, Manufacturing Production I; and Karleigh Dawn Taylor, Expanded Duty Dental Assisting


Braeden Randall Martin, Manufacturing Management and Leadership; Seth David Medlin, Computer Technology; Edward Franklin Scroggs, III, Multi-Process Welding; and Michael Kane Thomason, Mechatronics Technology



Dakota Noel Bright, Associate in Science; and Cody Nual Cannon, CNC Programming and Operations


Russell Scott Alexander, Industrial Electronics Technology; Tyler Patrick Cade, General Engineering Technology; and Kevin Lee Moore, Industrial Electronics Technology


Laurin Bailey Ables, Practical Nursing; Channon Elaine Black, Medical Assisting; Esther Marie Blackwell, Associate in Arts; Brittany Paige Bright, Early Care and Education; Chelsie Emily Comeaux, Associate in Science; Adam Perry Covington, Auto Engine Electrical Systems; Justin Walter Dense, Associate in Arts; Bethany Ann Dyar, Medical Assisting; Jessica Carllynn Ford, Personal Care Aide; Jessica M. Forkin, Associate in Arts; Kevin Joseph Gibeault, Associate in Science; Jonathan Marshall Gibson, CNC Programming and Operations; Cathy Lynn Hawkins, Personal Care Aide; Megan Lynn Henderson, Associate in Science; Chelsea Lynn Keaton, Management; Lily Ann Kuhner, Personal Care Aide; Jessica LeAnn Martin, Associate in Science; Lawrence Alan McKeon, Industrial Welding; Kristopher Ross Morrison, CNC Programming and Operations; Meredith Grace Moss, Surgical Technology; Wesley Jonathan O'Kelley, Manufacturing Management and Leadership; Gavin Drey Owen, CNC Programming and Operations; Caitlyn Raqual Purvis, Medical Assisting; Devon Avery Raines, General Technology - Welding; Luz Guadalupe Ruvalcaba, Surgical Technology; Christopher Nathan Sheriff, Industrial Electronics Technology; Alexander J. Stelline, Industrial Welding; Hanna Marie Stewart, Associate in Science; Katelyn Marie Thomas, Associate in Science; Katelyn Nicole Vislocky, Associate in Science; Desiree Lyn Warren, Early Care and Education; Aubrey Lauren Whisnant, Associate in Science; Alic Slate Whitmire, CNC Programming and Operations; and Kenneth Deshawn Williams, Industrial Welding


Lynn S. Addis, Associate in Science; Katie Marie Brown, Associate in Science; Cody Lee Gibson, CNC Programming and Operations; Patricia Kathryn Lee, Medical Assisting; Amanda Grace Morris, Practical Nursing; Rachel D. Norton, Expanded Duty Dental Assisting; Aurora Lucille Salazar, Expanded Duty Dental Assisting; and Katelynn Alyssa Salazar, Associate in Science


Jacob Allen Ledbetter, Industrial Electronics Technology; John David Long, General Technology - Welding; Zachary David Vaughn, Business Foundations; and Cody Lee Webb, Management


David Aaron Aluoto, Mechatronics Technology; Carlos David Beatriz, CNC Programming and Operations; Matthew Robert Blair, Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning Technology; Ethan Carver Canupp, CNC Programming and Operations; Ross Steven Cater, Industrial Welding; Dustin L. Drake, Mechatronics Technology; Meghan Miranda Glenn, Administrative Office Technology - Medical Emphasis; William Eric Holder, Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning Technology; Ryan Arthur Marcengill, Associate in Arts; Trent Allen McIntire, General Engineering Technology; Kristen Faith Metcalf, Expanded Duty Dental Assisting; Shay Anne Rankin, Medical Assisting; Andrew Edward Reed, Computer Technology; Hannah Caroline Sutton, Practical Nursing; Candice Nichole Swafford, Associate in Science; Coster Vargas, Associate in Arts; Tyler R. Wilbanks, General Technology - Welding; and Daniel Ashley Yates, Mechatronics Technology



Sandibel Aguilar, Associate in Science; Kayla Patricia Barnes, Medical Assisting; Robert Carl Bellas, Computer Technology; Lauren V. Campbell, Associate in Science; Yolanda Contreras, Associate in Arts; Caleb Dempsey, Associate in Arts; Mohamed S. Elmehdawi, Associate in Science; David Corday Kale, Associate in Arts; Tyler Parker Lloyd, General Technology - Welding; William Scott Mueller, HVAC Apprentice; Samantha Olvera, Associate in Science; Bethany Doan Passmore, General Technology - Welding; Jonathan Nicholas Riggins, General Engineering Technology; Benjamin Charles Weatherford, Mechatronics Technology; and Kenadi A. Weaver, General Engineering Technology


Heidi Nichole Altman, Associate in Arts; Nicholas Eddis, Associate in Arts; Luke Tyson Lampe, General Technology - Welding; John Jefferson Porter, Jr., General Engineering Technology; Nawfal Saleem, Associate in Science; Tyler Francis Smith, Criminal Justice Technology - Leadership and Management; and Joseph Khan Torres, Associate in Arts


Trevon Lee Benjamin, Associate in Science; Patricia Ann Borm, Associate in Arts; Christopher Lee Burgess, General Technology - Welding; Jacob Robert Burgess, Industrial Welding; Maria Alejandra Campo Caballero, Accounting; Sabrina Jessica Carter, Associate in Science; Emily McCollum Dawkins, Expanded Duty Dental Assisting; Evan Wyatt Garland, General Technology - Welding; Dylan West Garner, Computer Technology; Andrew Tyler Gayheart, Industrial Welding; Cole Vincent Gilstrap, General Technology - Welding; Sally J. Gurrie, Computer Technology; Kerri Renee Hammonds, Associate in Science; Jake Alan Harbin, Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning Technology; James Trenton Heath, General Technology - Welding; Laura Carson Henderson, Associate in Science; Collin Lee Herron, Mechatronics Technology; Emily M. Lesley, Associate in Science; Jessica Lynn Lingerfelt, Associate in Science; Ian James Mahaffey, Mechatronics Technology; Katelyn R. Marcengill, Criminal Justice Technology; Hunter Forrest McCollum, Criminal Justice Technology; Charles David Morgan, Media Arts Production; Emma Jun Pickler, Associate in Arts; Tristan Chance Pitt, General Technology - Welding; Lyndsie Raye Ridge, Accounting; Brian Kenneth Roberts, Associate in Science; Mateo Rodriguez, Media Arts Production; David James Roe, Industrial Welding; Robert Stephen Root, Business Administration - Management Emphasis; and Andre Taylor Scott, Mechatronics Technology


Lesia Lynch Bryant, Medical Assisting; Daniel Juan Cabrera, Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning Technology; Kimberlin Alexis Clark, Associate in Arts; Michael Andrew Cochran, Industrial Electronics Technology; Stefani Rose Cosma, Surgical Technology; Kathryn Shea Finn, Practical Nursing; Grace Ann Good, Expanded Duty Dental Assisting; April Dawn Hill, Nursing; Alexis R. King, Associate in Arts; Carla Michelle Lostraglio, Accounting; Karly Amber Ruth Norris, Medical Assisting; and Taylor Christopher Zorn, Associate in Arts


William Tanner Butler, CNC Programming and Operations; Amber Elizabeth Cole, Surgical Technology; Gage Ronald Durham, General Technology - Welding; David Allen Greenlaw, General Technology - Welding; Jonathan A. Hayes, Management; Krystal N. Hudson, Practical Nursing; Harrison George Kloth, Industrial Electronics Technology; Christopher Hampton Lusk, Computer Technology; Jacob Andrew McKinney, Industrial Electronics Technology; Kristie Lynn Morrison, Expanded Duty Dental Assisting; and Ashlyn Brooke Terry, Expanded Duty Dental Assisting


Zachary Chase Crumpton, Industrial Electronics Technology; Lee Smith Littlejohn, IV, Business Administration; Christal Jean O'Shea, Expanded Duty Dental Assisting; Gabriella Ruth Seigler, Associate in Science; Jordan Matthew Ray Stout, University Studies (C2C); and Jeremy Hunter Warlick, General Technology – Welding



Benjamin Ryan Branham, Industrial Electronics Technology


Michael John Barnes, Manufacturing Management and Leadership; Lorey Elizabeth Bell, Associate in Arts; Savannah G. Bragg, Associate in Arts; and Rebekah M. Holsenback, Associate in Science


Austin Wilbur Woods, Associate in Science


Lauren Amber Jones, Associate in Science


Gerardo Mosqueda, Surgical Technology


Rachel Kathleen Bryant, Associate in Arts; and Danielle Ann Caldwell, Associate in Arts


Jennifer Renee Hensley, Associate in Arts


Lucas McKay Hill, General Technology - Welding; and Konika M. Robinson, Associate in Arts


Marijka Hinkel, Practical Nursing


Devin M. Harwell, Associate in Science


Kaila P. Sigman, Associate in Arts


Lucius Ray Miller, III, Automotive Technology


Holly Miller Jenkins, Expanded Duty Dental Assisting


Justen K. Stampley, Associate in Science


Louange Coffi, Manufacturing Management and Leadership; Ragon Riley Lister, Associate in Science; Stella Moraes Barreto Gutberlet, Associate in Arts; Eddie Nguyen, SMA Pipe Welding; Ermira Parker, Surgical Technology; Son Van Pham, Practical Nursing; Kelly Vaughan Shelton, Associate in Science; Krystall N. Spearman, Practical Nursing; and Robert John Stahlsmith, III, Associate in Arts


Chandler Neal Cone, Manufacturing Management and Leadership; Julia Grace Louise Henderson, University Studies; Heather Nicole Smith, Business Administration; and Samantha B. Walker, Associate in Science


Kaitlyn Shea Goodman, Associate in Arts


Rachel E. Cribb, Associate in Science


Jonathan Perez, General Technology - Welding


James Patrick McGovern, Jr., Associate in Arts


Garrit M. Speiss, Associate in Arts


Addie Elizabeth Jones, Associate in Science


Jacob Hanson, Associate in Science


Ally Rose Moon, University Studies


Ashlyn Taylor McEwen, Associate in Arts; and Mary Elisabeth Snow, Associate in Science


Allison Yvonne Marling, University Studies


Johnny Garzon, Associate in Science; and Morgan Brittany Zepeda, Associate in Arts


Worth Connell Burnette, Associate in Arts; and Russell C. Glass, Associate in Arts


Bruce Alton Carr, Associate in Science


Brenna Susanne Connor, Associate in Arts


Lorenzo Terence Lewis, II, Associate in Arts; and Mallory Claire Tedder, Associate in Science


Madison Harry Avant, General Engineering Technology


Lauren M. Henry, Associate in Science


Kevin Botero, Criminal Justice Technology; Austin Wyatt Graham, Computer Technology; and Anna Rose McIlwain, Veterinary Technology


Sydney Marie Harris, Expanded Duty Dental Assisting


Cassidy Nicole Beaty, Associate in Arts; Katherine Anne Burris, Associate in Arts; and Roland Andre Lafond, General Technology - Welding


Andrew R. Hagans, Associate in Arts; Bailey J. Phillips, Associate in Arts; and Samara Deshawna Sullivan, Associate in Science


Silas Jordan Crisp, General Technology - Welding; Kara Ann Page, Medical Assistinging; and Lena Ngoc Vo, Practical Nursing


Patrick Conner McMahan, Associate in Arts; Victoria Leigh Niemann, Associate in Science; Travis Todd Simmons, Engineering Design Technology; and Hannah Elizabeth Wage, Associate in Arts