More than 1,600 students walked across the stage at the Amway Arena to receive their diplomas during Florida Technical College’s 2019 commencement ceremony. The graduates, 56 percent of whom are Hispanic, received diplomas in more than 8 programs, ranging from diplomas to associate degrees, to four-year bachelor’s degrees. Students from the Digital Animation and Special Effects (DAVE) School, a sister film and game production college, were also among the graduates.
“Our graduates are now ready to contribute more fully to their families, their communities, and our country,” said FTC President Dr. James Burkett. They have faced many challenges, juggling busy lives, young families, and work demands; but they have prevailed because they believed in themselves. I am extremely proud of them.”
Tim Tebow, Triple-A Syracuse baseball player, two-time football national champion, first round NFL draft pick, and Heisman Trophy winner, delivered a salutation to the graduates in a video.
“Today marks a new beginning for you all,” said Tebow. “Your education is an important foundation, and you are now ready to build big on it. Go at it wholeheartedly. Don’t be afraid of taking risks or failing. Find something you’re passionate about. Be willing to sacrifice, that is the difference between winning and losing.”
This year’s graduating class was unique, as FTC welcomed many students from Puerto Rico who were affected by Hurricane Maria in 2017. The influx of students prompted FTC to launch several programs taught completely in Spanish to facilitate their transition into the Florida job market.
“We have seen amazing results from implementing these programs. The process has had a significant impact on the lives of the students. That is testimony to the power of education and determination,” said Dr. Burkett.
Among the graduates, 441 took the stage to receive their diploma in construction trade programs. These FTC graduates will provide a much-needed workforce for Central Florida, as well as the rest of the state, especially in fields such as electrical and welding.
“This year’s class graduates at an opportune time as the country faces a great need for skilled workers. We strive to help fill gaps in the labor market with talented workers who are essential to helping our economy grow,” emphasized Dr. James Burkett.
A second Florida Technical College graduation class of 430 students will celebrate their graduation on June 29 at the Hilton Miami Airport Convention Center.
FTC has flexible schedule in all its seven Florida campuses. The school is an academic unit of National University College, which is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. Financial aid is available for those who qualify. For additional information or to register, call 321-684-4034.
About FTC: Founded in 1982 to provide private, post-secondary education in specialized fields, Florida Technical College is an academic unit of National University College (NUC), which is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE), 3624 Market Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104 (267) 284-5000. MSCHE is a regional accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. FTC offers associate and bachelor’s degrees and diploma programs in a range of professions, including healthcare, construction trades, computer networking, culinary arts, and cosmetology. FTC campuses are located in Orlando, Kissimmee, Lakeland, Tampa, DeLand, Pembroke Pines, and Cutler Bay. Program availability varies by campus. For graduation rates, median debt of students who completed the program, and other important information, please visit www.ftccollege.edu/disclosures.html.