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Atlantic Cape Awards More Than 900 Degrees at Commencement

May 19, 2011

 Atlantic Cape Community College awarded 908 associate in arts, associate in applied science and associate in science degrees at the school’s 44th commencement, Thursday, May 19. Dr. Wilson N. Felder, director of the Federal Aviation Administration’s William J. Hughes Technical Center in Egg Harbor Township, delivered the keynote address.

Dr. Peter L. Mora, Atlantic Cape president, presented honorary associate in applied science degrees to Felder and Dr. Lynn Hoffman, who served as this year’s Beacons by the Sea Visiting Professor.

The Lindback Distinguished Teaching Excellence Award was presented to Cheryl Knowles-Harrigan of Milmay, assistant professor of art. Linwood attorney Michael Rann received the President’s Distinguished Alumni Award, which recognizes an Atlantic Cape graduate who has distinguished him or herself through professional, personal, public or community-based accomplishments. In addition, James Cooper Esq. of Margate, president emeritus of the Atlantic Cape Foundation, received the first President’s Distinguished Foundation Board Member Award, which recognizes a current or past member of the board who has demonstrated leadership, advocacy and support on behalf of the college and its students.

High honors student Michael Lamanna of Stone Harbor, 34, who achieved a perfect 4.0 average, delivered the class farewell. Lamanna received an associate in science degree in general studies. Lamanna joined the college in 2009, after working for 12 years in the theater, film and television industry. He achieved a perfect 4.0 average and earned an associate in science degree in general studies. Lamanna is a member of the Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society. After graduation, he plans to pursue a degree in English at a four-year school.

“In my time at Atlantic Cape, I became a part of this small college community, and I learned what it really means to be a part of my larger community outside of the school,” he said.  “In this modern world that ascribes a high value to ambition and often revolves around technology that can increase personal isolation and alienation, I cannot stress enough how important it is that we not forget what it means to be a part of a community.”

Student Government Association President Wanda Lugo of Pleasantville, 21, told the graduates: “It is our time to shine and show the world who we are and what we bring to the table. No matter how hard it gets, try your hardest, never give up on things that seem impossible to obtain.”

Brian Ferrante of Woodbine was elected by the student body to serve as alumni representative to the college’s board of trustees, and was recognized. He earned an associate in science degree in general studies.

David Evans, board of trustees vice chairperson, conferred and presented degrees to the graduates.

Note: The list of graduates is available on Atlantic Cape’s website: by selecting Class of 2011 List of Graduates from the Headlines. The list includes students who have or are expected to complete the requirements for an associate degree in the 2010-2011 school year.