SMC sends another 160 graduates into the world

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photos by Joseph V. Labolito

Graduation is obviously a time to celebrate the achievements of the students who have put in the hard work to obtain an academic degree. But it’s also a day to celebrate the people who helped get them there, too.

The Temple Performing Arts Center was packed with friends and family members ready to cheer on their favorite grads as they walked across the stage Jan. 31. More than 160 students were eligible to graduate from the School of Media and Communication this winter.

Christien Starks, a senior in the Fox School of Business, was there to watch his mother, Brenda, receive her degree in strategic communication.

“She saw me going and she said, ‘You know what? If you can do it, I can do it, too,’ and she just went for it,” Christien said, who will be graduating in August. “I’m really proud of her. I work with a lot of older people and they say the same thing – they wish they could go back to school. I keep telling them that it’s not too late.”

Philip and Anne Marie Montoni were celebrating the end of a 10-year journey for their daughter, Angela, who earned a degree in communications.

“We’re very happy. We’re very proud of her,” said Anne Marie, who never doubted graduation day would come. “She had a lot of obstacles in her way, but she was determined.”

And it sounds like Angela’s educational journey hasn’t ended. She hopes to return to Temple to pursue a master’s degree in media studies and production.

The graduates – and their families – were able to hear speeches from Tasia Morgan, a 2014 journalism graduate, and Marty Moss-Coane, a 1973 graduate of the College of Liberal Arts and host of WHYY’s Radio Times. Moss-Coane did not attend her graduation ceremony and never received her diploma four decades ago. As a special surprise, SMC welcomed CLA Dean Teresa Soufas to the ceremony to present her diploma.