Dr. David Russell was Columbia College's interim president when he delivered the May 2020 commencement address at Mizzou Arena (May 2020 file photo courtesy of Columbia College's Sam Fleury)

Columbia College’s graduation ceremonies feature students from 12 countries

Dr. David Russell was Columbia College’s interim president when he delivered the May 2020 commencement address at Mizzou Arena (May 2020 file photo courtesy of Columbia College’s Sam Fleury)

Saturday’s commencement ceremonies at Southwell Athletic Complex are the first ones Columbia College has hosted on campus since December 2019.

243 Columbia College students will graduate tomorrow: the first ceremony is at 10 am and the second is at 2. This is also Dr. David Russell’s first commencement ceremony serving as Columbia College’s president.

College spokesman Sam Fleury says each student has been given six tickets to encourage social distancing, and seating will be in pods.

He also notes students from 12 different nations will graduate tomorrow, including the United States, the U.K., Mexico, Brazil and Nigeria.

Meantime, 23 nursing students who’ve already lined up jobs will graduate Friday evening from Columbia College.

The 23 students will graduate with their associate in science in nursing. One of them is Wendy Arnold, a non-traditional student who works at University Hospital’s neuro intensive care unit. Wendy’s daughter, Megan Asplund, graduated from the nursing program this spring and is also transitioning to the NICU.

Mr. Fleury tells 939 the Eagle that this epitomizes what the college’s nursing program is all about.

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