JCC holding virtual commencement followed by drive-through diploma presentation


WATERTOWN, N.Y. (WWTI) — Jefferson Community College will hold its 57th annual spring commencement ceremony on May 21.

The event begins at 7 p.m. and will be held virtually on the college’s website due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The college will hold DiplomaPalooza!, a drive-through diploma presentation ceremony, on May 22 at 11 a.m. and again at 1:30 p.m. in front of Jules Center, Building 6.

Families will have the opportunity to drive along beside their graduate and share in their celebration from the safety of their vehicle, while the graduate receives the diploma from JCC President Dr. Ty A. Stone.

Graduates must register online to attend DiplomaPalooza! Once students register, they will receive a time slot to arrive. Registration and full commencement event information can be found on the college’s website. All COVID safety protocols will be followed.

Jefferson distinguished alumnus Nathaniel J. Chapin, of Mountainview, California, will deliver the commencement address. Chapin is a senior software engineer at Google. He holds an associate degree from Jefferson and a bachelor’s and master’s degree in computer science from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute where he graduated cum laude.

Commencement keynote speaker is Nathaniel J. Chapin, originally of Watertown, senior software engineer at Google and a JCC distinguished alumni.

As senior software engineer with a 14-year career at Google, he specializes in building new technologies into Google Chrome to help web developers build more powerful websites. He was published in the online Journal of Experimental & Theoretical Artificial Intelligence and presented at BlinkOn, a public conference for people interested in influencing Chrome’s future direction.

Originally from Watertown, Chapin started at JCC part-time when he was just 13 years old. He completed his associate degree in 2003 at the age of 16. In 2012, Chapin received the Rising Star Award from the JCC Alumni Association, a prestigious award bestowed to recipients who exhibit the potential for significant professional achievement, promise for continued success, and set an inspirational example for future alumni.

The student commencement speaker is Logan A. Laisdell of Adams Center. Laisdell earned her associate in applied science degree in individual studies in December. With a 3.68 grade point average, Logan has been named to the President’s List and Dean’s List.

She is a member of JCC’s Tau Xi Chapter of Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society and served as the secretary of the art club for three consecutive years.  Laisdell is the 2016 cover artist of the JCC School of Arts and Humanities’ Black River Review and received the 2016 Outstanding Art Contribution Award for her painting and collage submissions as well as her cover art.

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