No ticket needed to celebrate outdoors with LCC class of 2013

2013-06-20T17:00:00Z 2013-06-20T17:01:55Z No ticket needed to celebrate outdoors with LCC class of 2013By The Daily News Longview Daily News
June 20, 2013 5:00 pm  • 

For the first time in more than a decade, Lower Columbia College’s commencement will be outdoors.

And Friday night's graduation — under a rising, nearly full moon — is especially fitting since the guest speaker helped the U.S. land on the moon.

LCC’s 77th commencement starts at 6:30 p.m. Friday at Kelso High School’s 5,000-seat Ed Laulainen Stadium at Schroeder Field. The ceremony is usually held in the 1,000-seat Myklebust Gymnasium, which is closed for remodeling.

Because of the larger venue, there is no limit on guests and no ticket required. And students earning a high school diploma or a GED certificate through LCC will be honored tonight with the other graduates. In past years, they have graduated in separate ceremonies due to space limitations.

LCC students earned 736 degrees and one-year certificates during the 2012-13 year.

The commencement speaker will be Paul Laufman, LCC’s 2013 Alumnus of the Year. He graduated from Lower Columbia Junior College in 1958. He studied math and science to pursue a career in engineering and was a member of the Red Devils baseball team.

Laufman completed a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Washington State University and a master’s of science in systems management from the University of Southern California.

An early participant in America’s space programs, Laufman was a project engineer in the development of rocket propulsion systems for major defense and manned space programs, including the Apollo moon landing and the space shuttles. In 1995, he co-founded United Paradyne Corporation, which became the exclusive contractor providing propellants and pressurants for space missions and many commercial satellite launches worldwide.

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(5) Comments

  1. Snickerfritz
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    Snickerfritz - June 21, 2013 11:40 am
    Why are GED dropouts getting to share a stage with actual graduates? Way to diminish the accom
  2. Snickerfritz
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    Snickerfritz - June 21, 2013 11:44 am
    My comment sent on accident. " way to diminish the work of actual collage degree recipricants by handing out consolation prices to dropouts first. They don't belong on that stage. A GED is not an accomplishment but more of a badge of mediocrity showing you are unable to succeed where most can. This ceremony should not be for them. There shouldn't be a ceremony for GED students at all.
  3. AlishaCatherine
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    AlishaCatherine - June 21, 2013 2:25 pm
    You know...students with cognitive and mental disabilities receive high school diplomas whereas students who earn their GED have to reach a certain level of measured competency in math, social studies, science, reading, and writing. I teach GED classes, and I hear students say all the time "I should have stayed in high school--it was so much easier than this!" Going back to school takes more courage and commitment than just floating through high school classes the first time around.
  4. ajack
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    ajack - June 21, 2013 3:23 pm
    Really?! Wow! folks earning their GED have worked very hard and should get recognition also. There are many reasons why they were unable to get their diploma. All graduates should walk PROUD!
  5. Laina
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    Laina - June 25, 2013 3:13 pm
    Eddie Laulainen AND Paul Laufman were both RAL Class of '56'...we are all so proud of these men! They graduated from high school-went on to college and did wonderful things! It wasn't always easy, but they hung in there and did it!........ Hurray for them! With love & respect, we claim you, forever, as ours! R A Long Class of '1956'
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