Greenfield Community College graduate credits success to her school ‘family’

  • Carissa Fuller receives her diploma from President Dr. Robert L. Pura during the Greenfield Community College commencement ceremony on Saturday, June 2, 2018. Recorder Staff/Dan Little

  • Graduate Myisha Stephens is given flowers by her mother after receiving her diploma from Greenfield Community College. Recorder Staff/Dan Little

  • Greenfield Community College graduates listen to President Dr. Robert L. Pura speak during the commencement ceremony on Saturday, June 2, 2018. Recorder Staff/Dan Little

  • Outgoing Greenfield Community College President Dr. Robert L. Pura exits the tent after the commencement ceremony on Saturday, June 2, 2018. Recorder Staff/Dan Little

  • Greenfield Community College graduates Carrie L. Hale and Melissa Osborne pose for photos after the commencement ceremony on Saturday, June 2, 2018. Recorder Staff/Dan Little

  • Greenfield Community College graduates take photos with friends and family under the shade of a tree after the commencement ceremony on Saturday, June 2, 2018. Recorder Staff/Dan Little

  • Greenfield Community College graduate Lastone Saya takes photos with family after the commencement ceremony on Saturday, June 2, 2018. Recorder Staff/Dan Little

  • Greenfield Community College graduates take photos with friends and family under the shade of a tree after the commencement ceremony on Saturday, June 2, 2018. Recorder Staff/Dan Little

Recorder Staff
Monday, June 04, 2018

GREENFIELD — Two hundred ninety-two Greenfield Community College students officially became alumni at a time when community colleges are essential to the workforce.

That’s what Patricia Marshall of the state Department of Higher Education told the college’s graduates as they marked the end of this chapter in their lives.

They will become nurses, computer programmers, accountants and much more. On that grassy green Saturday, Marshall, the deputy commissioner for academic affairs and student success, thanked them for their efforts. Many community college graduates go on to work in the very state they went to school in, and therefore, Marshall said, fuel the local economy.

“We can all take pride in the fact that Massachusetts leads the nation with 51 percent of adults holding college degrees,” Marshall said.

And the students did take pride. As they marched across the stage, clad in the traditional caps and gowns, they waved to friends and family and fondly shook hands with their professors.

Student speaker and 2018 graduate of the nursing program Melissa Osborne exuded a sense of accomplishment as she spoke to the crowd, having earned her second degree at the school.

Humbly, Osborne made clear that the momentous accomplishment could not have been achieved without the help of the school’s staff, students and her own family.

“Greenfield Community College has been a second family to me,” said Osborne, who lost her mother to cancer while she attended the school. The school helped her through her troubles, and allowed her to take time off during a semester to grieve, and again later when she gave birth to her daughter.

“Family can recognize your weaknesses and step in to provide the support you need when you need it. I sure did need it,” Osborne said. “Life happens, and I believe the resiliency I have is a testament to the support of my family.”

Osborne was emotional during her speech, as were several of her fellow students, who clearly related to her sense of having completed an arduous journey.

With her fiancée and two children, Osborne plans on staying in the area and making Franklin County a better place. She told her classmates she’s happy to think they’ll do the same.

“To the nursing class: I’m honored to be in a place where you all will be living and learning,” Osborne said.

Robert Pura, giving comments at the school’s 55th commencement ceremony — and at the end of his 18th and final year as Greenfield Community College president — also expressed pride, not only for the graduates themselves, but for the faculty who’ve guided them through the last several years.

“Your achievement is also a reflection of your teachers, the faculty and staff of GCC. Each has come to this college because of you. GCC faculty and staff are wonderful scientists and researchers, paramedics and police officers, nurses and doctors, poets, accountants and artists, but they see themselves first as teachers,” Pura said.

He continued: “It was the faculty and staff of GCC who saw your potential — often before you did — and together you have worked to achieve it.”


Accounting: Samantha Gorzocoski

Business and Information Technology: Teodor Radev

Criminal Justice: Marcus Johansson

Drama Award: Eaden Marti

Liberal Arts/Dance: Annie Pollack & Eva Sagan

Early Childhood Education: Genevieve Wentzel-Smith

Liberal Arts/English: Carissa Fuller

International Student Scholastic Achievement Award: Mahendra Sapkota

Liberal Arts/Social Sciences: Chelsea Ellsworth & Kaitlyn Cawthorn

Nursing: For excellence in nursing care: Amy Wood

Nursing: For academic excellence: Michelle Paulin

Donald Oberacker Liberal Arts/Science: Justin Roch

Liberal Arts: Helen Murphy

The Charles Green Award: Dadrian Bernard



Laura Ruth Addabbo

Andrey Andreyevich Agapov

David Ahlberg

Joel D. Aiken, Sr.

Katrina Marie Aldrich

Claire L. Allen

Zachary T. Allis

Emily E. Almeida

Caleb Angell

Caitlyn J. Arellano

Anna Ashe-Simmer

Jacob L. Atomanuk

Jarrett M. Austin

Margaret A. Awan

Amy Lee Baker

Kayley Marie Bartak

Josette Claire Bartley

Lauren K. Bennett

Dadrian Bernard

Vanessa M. Berthiaume

Ryan Bezio

Hillary Bidwell

Amanda Rose Binette

Andrew Blake

Yotam Block

Jamie Bolduc

Taylor Boutwell

Elizabeth Noelle Breault

Barbara Jayne Broussard

Grafton Brown

Marc Brown

Lynden Bunker

Chad M. Butler

Johnathan Cagle

Maia Callahan

Pisey Caloon

Jason Cambra

David Caplice

Patrick B. Capparrille

Cale J. Carney

Linda Carpenter

Gabriel Carreiro

Kaitlyn Marie Cawthorn

Isabella Céspedes-Ashe

Aliona Cheptea

Tenzin Chokey

Tala Chunga

Kathleen Cimino

Abigail Howe Clarke

Amanda Cleary

Neal Colburn

Aidan Connelly

Nicholas Dean Constantilos

Sarah Cook

Olatunde Cooper

Keith Cotnoir

Felicia Marie Craver

Holly Cronin

Andrew William Dagarin

Victoria Anne Dalton

Viorica Darii

Carley Amber Davis

Michelle Dawicki

Nicholas Dawson

Brittany Deats

Ioannis Diakolambrianos

Ashley Dion

Colby Dobias

Kyle Patrick Dragon

Robert Dragon

Nicole Dresser

Megan Duga

Jessica Lynn Dupré

Danyelle Earnest-Higgins

Geoffrey Ellis

Chelsea Lee Ellsworth

Brittany Marie Emerson

Jasmine Farr-Marcum

Igor G. Federyuk

Tyffani Marie Felisko

Benjamin Fellows

Rebecca A. Felton

Michael S. Feyre

Cody W. Fifield

Megan Finnell

Alan Prescott Fish

Carissa Ann Fuller

Stephanie Lynn Funk

Costanza Fusco

Kelly M. Ghiz

Nicolas I. Glassman Carmona

Evan Gold

Susannah M. Goodale

Samantha Nicole Gorzocoski

Danielle K. Grenier

Binayak Gurung

Pratik Gurung

Carrie L. Hale

Aubrey Halket

Katie V. Halkett

Ann M. Hallenbeck

Benjamin Harrington

Elliot Hartmann-Russell

Tyler Harwood

Abbey Leigh Hathaway

Jack Hebert

Jordan Helzer

MaKayla Hicks

Melinda S. Hodgkins

James Hokonya

Stephanie A. Hopkins

Melanie Howard

Molly Susan Howe

Samuel Douglas Howe

Ethan Hurlburt

Catherine Jane Hyer

Nathan W. Jackman

Nathan Jepsen

Marcus Johansson

Bonnie Jean Augusta Johnson

Rowan Levi Jones

Danielle C. Kaiser

Andrew J. Karcz

Helene Rose Kasper

Lydia Anne Kasper

Cassandra D. Kazar

Maya Kazinskas

Jared Nicholas Kellogg

Erin N. Kerdavid

David Kida

Anne W. Kimani

Blake Kimball

Pamela Ann Kimball

Kouame, Konan Jean-Dominique

Juthamas Kuldiloke

Felicia Kunesch

Tammy B. LaChance

Jodi E. Lachance

Emily Lachapelle

Katelyn Jeanne Laclaire

Cara Leach

Daniel Lee

Alyse Jody Leonard

Evan John Lesenski

Seth D. Licata

Virginia Irene Lingwall

Francesca Mahaney

Joseph A. Mancino

Sarah Lynn Marshall

Eaden Marti

Thomas Mashrick

Xiomara Nina Matathias

Jacqueline R. Mathers

Jeffrey P. McAndrews

Jacqueline McMillan

Kyle Paul McWherter

Brandon Patrick McMahon

William E. Meese

Alejandra Mercado

Brittany Marie Miller

Joshua R. Miller

Scott Miner

Sandra Mizula

Rebecca Suzannw Moretti

Jonathan B. Moriarty

Helen Murphy

Stephen P. Murray

Elena Naryzhnaya

Darlene Negron

Justin Nigrelli

Kaylea Ruth Niles

Paul “Pete” T. Norwood

Jesse Olson

Madeleise Ortiz

Melissa Ann Osborne

Arianne E. Page

Joseph Page

See Kyung Pak

Melissa Pariseau

Michelle R. Paulin

Matthew Pellegrini

Maxwell J. Pellerin

Denis Pelletier

Toni Peters

Kyla Phoenix

Tsering Phuntsok

Brittany Pickunka

Ashley Pierce

Amanda Plasse

Annie Pollak

Daniel Postema

Kelli Poulin

Teodor N. Radev

Bambi D. Rawlings-Chamberlin

Justin C. Roch

Nino Rodriguez

Alexander Rome

Joshua J. Romeo

Emma K. Rosenthal

Noah Rosner

Jessica Lynn Routier

Gabrielle Roy

Karlyn Russ

Dustin K. Russo

Daniel Rutledge

Yvette Ryles

Eva Marie Sagan

Sierra Sanborn

Mahendra Sapkota

Shawn Savasuk

Kyle G. Sawin

Lastone Saya

Betty Schneider

Daniel Schott

Kelsey Tyler Scranton

Julia Tamsin Shaw

Jessica Renee Shelkey

Meghan-Grace Slocombe

Todd Smith

Hannah R. Sol

Lorenzo Joseph Sordoni III

Rebecca Mona Spradley

Alyzsa Sprague

Jacob E. Steeves

Tatyana Stepchuk

Viktoriya Stepchuk

Myisha Stephens

Emily Stone

Olga Lucia Stowe

David R. Strong

Seamus Sullivan

Hannah Swain

Jeffrey Szelewicki

Alina Tahij

Elena Tahij

Ana Taraburca

Jasper Temple

Megan Tidlund

Alexander David Tirrell

Norah M.Tower

Eric Tuvell

Kiefer Tyrrell

Michael Vancott

Angela Vias

James R. Vollinger

Emily Jane Walker

Oliver Walz

Laura J. Ward

Samuel C. Weaver

Erin Webster

Navi Weiss

Sarah Amadea Wennemyr

Genevieve Wentzel-Smith

Tyler Andrew Wheelock

Kori N. Wileman

Matthew Williams

Shari A. Williams

Stephanie Williams

Eric J. Wilson

Amy L. Wood

Randi Wyngowski

Namgyal Yangzom

Autumn E. Ylvisaker

Alejo Torres Zacarias

Sarah Eve Zimm

Reach David McLellan at dmclellan@recorder.com or 413-772-0261, ext. 268.