Columbia College celebrates 495 graduates during commencement

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COLUMBIA — Hundreds of smiling faces filled Columbia College's May Commencement ceremony Saturday.

Their 2016 graduating class included students from 28 different states and 21 different countries. 

495 students participated in the commencement ceremonies, including 25 students involved with the nurses' pinning ceremonies.

Many students in the graduating class are the first in their families to graduate college.

"We are changing the trajectory of our families," Columbia College President, Dr. Scott Dalrymple said.

Dalrymple took the stage and shared a story about the importance of sticking to something until you achieve your goal, no matter what the odds. 

Mr. Vin Capone, a 20-year veteran of Apple Inc., gave the commencement address.

Capone added a personal touch to his speech, pointing out student success stories that highlighted the hard work of individual graduates.  

Capone noted at the end of his speech encouraging students to make their biggest mistake their best opportunity.

The ceremony included students from 36 different Columbia College locations. This commencement included bagpipes and a drum corps for the second time in College history.