The Kachemak Bay College Campus held its graduation ceremony Wednesday. Family and friends gathered in Homer High School’s auditorium to watch 13 GEDs and 21 certificates awarded. Nineteen graduates also received associate, bachelor and master’s degrees.
Retiring Associate Professor of Mathematics Sara Reinert was set to address the graduating class, but was unable to attend. Campus Director Carol Swartz spoke to Reinert’s impact on campus.
“During her past 25 years as assistant and associate professor of mathematics, she has made a significant difference in the lives of many students who have attributed their successful completion of their degree, and specifically to math and statistic courses,” Swartz said of Reinert, “to her enthusiasm, humor, supportive and individualized teaching style, out-of-the-box approach and above all her passionate, her respectful and steadfast commitment to your success.”
Retired Professor of History Michael Hawfield delivered Reinert’s keynote address, which focused on not only change the graduates will face, but used her own life as an example.
“There were a lot of other changes as I grew. The Civil Rights Act was passed in the 1960s, though there is still no equal rights amendment guaranteeing women the same rights as men. There have been men on the moon and there are female astronauts,” Hawfield read. “There are women on the Supreme Court. There’s a favorite quote of mine from Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg when she was asked ‘When will there be enough women on the Supreme Court?’ She responded, “When there are nine.’ People were shocked.”
Graduates were not the only ones recognized for their achievements. Faculty also announced Director Swartz was inducted into the Alaska Women’s Hall of Fame on May 4. Swartz was recognized for her 31 years serving as director, promoting education in the community and helping found the college’s Kachemak Bay Writer’s Conference. Ten other women also joined Hall of Fame alumni.
The campus’ Adult Basic Education and GED Coordinator Lolita Brache is also retiring this spring after 22 years with the college.