PRCC graduates advised to set goals and keep trying

May 16, 2013 - 12:41pm -- braswell

  Set targets for success and keep shooting at them, state Rep. Mark Formby said Wednesday during  Pearl River Community College graduation exercises at the Forrest County Multi Purpose Center.
  Formby, a former PRCC student, told the graduates and their families not to be discouraged when they fail to hit a target, using his own political losses as an example.
  “I’ve drawn a lot of circles out there,” he said. “I’ve shot a lot of arrows and missed. I’ve still got circles to draw and a lot of arrows to shoot. Even if you miss, it will turn out better than not having any target at all.”
  He praised the graduates for completing the first step to success.
  “It’s a big thing to be where you are today,” Formby said. “The neat thing is you did it on purpose. Hopefully, it’s not the greateset thing you will ever do, but it’s certainly a stepping stone to the future.”
  Graduation gave the Carpenter family of Hattiesburg its fourth PRCC alumni when Joshua Markel Carpenter received his diploma. His mother, Voloria Carpenter Mulligan, and her brother, Ken Carpenter, and their mother, PRCC barbering instructor Ola Carpenter, all graduated in 1994.
  “We’re so excited,” Mulligan said. “It was neat when I was there with my mom and we all wound up graduating on the same day.”
  Ola Carpenter returned to school after working for 20 years at Big Yank in Hattiesburg.
  “I was a little afraid to be with the young people, but I came on,” she said. Her children lived on campus - Voloria played basketball and Ken played football - while she commuted.
  A scholarship to play guard on the Wildcat basketball team, which won the state championship this year, convinced Josh to come to PRCC.
  “He wasn’t too happy about his grandmother being on campus but he got used to it,” Ola Carpenter said.
  Josh Carpenter acknowledges being a little hesitant at first but it worked out well.
  “It’s been good that she was here, and I was able to see her every once in a while and she’d help me out,” he said. He plans to pursue an athletic training degree at the University of Southern Mississippi.
  The 2013 graduating class also included the first 12 graduates of the PRCC Honors Institute established two years ago.
  Approximately 900 students completed requirements for an associate’s degree or certificate of proficiency in the past year. Of those, an estimated 400 participated in the graduation ceremony.
  “We want you to know how very proud we are of you,” said Dr. William Lewis, PRCC president. “The degree you are receiving from this historic institution symbolizes that you have gained the knowledge and skills to be successful.”


State Rep. Mark Formby of Picayune speaks during Pearl River Community College’s graduation on May 15 at the Forrest County Center in Hattiesburg. Behind him are, from left, Dr. Cecil Burt, vice president for Forrest County operations; Dr. William Lewis, president; and Frank Ladner of Bay St. Louis, president of the Board of Trustees.
PRCC Public Relations photo

Pearl River Community College students move their tassels to signify they are graduates during ceremonies on May 15 at the Forrest County Multi Purpose Center in Hattiesburg. They are, from left, Allison McDaniel of Columbia, Karina Hernandez of Hattiesburg, Kevin Grzenia of Chicago, Elizabeth Gomez of Picayune, Noel Bennett of Sumrall, Nicholas Aube` of Poplarville, members of the first Honors Institute graduating class; and Lane Balch of Picayune.
PRCC Public Relations photo

Pearl River Community College instructor Dwight Lee hands an honors cord to Constance Reed of Petal before PRCC graduation on May 15 at the Forrest County Multi Purpose Center. Looking on is Daiquari Raine of Poplarville.
PRCC Public Relations photo

The Carpenter family of Hattiesburg became a three-generation Pearl River Community College family on Wednesday, May 15, when Josh Carpenter, second from left, received his associate’s degree. The others all graduated in 1994 and are, from left, his mother, Voloria Carpenter Mulligan; his grandmother, barbering instructor Ola Carpenter; and his uncle, Ken Carpenter.
PRCC Public Relations photo

Frank Ladner of Bay St. Louis, president of the Pearl River Community College Board of Trustees, presented diplomas to his grandchildren, Dustin Ladner of Bay St. Louis and Emily Ladner of Picayune, at PRCC’s graduation exercises May 15 in Hattiesburg.
PRCC Public Relations photo