Nearly 1,200 students marched to "Pomp and Circumstance" over two days to receive their bachelor's or associate's degrees, or professional certifications from Edison State College.
The first ceremony honored the Charlotte Campus graduates on May 3 at the Charlotte Harbor Event & Conference Center in Punta Gorda. The commencement speaker was W. Cort Frohlich.
Today, the Lee Campus and Hendry/Glades Center graduates are being honored at Germain Arena in Estero. The commencement speaker is Porter Goss. The Collier Campus graduation ceremony is at The Philharmonic Center for the Arts in Naples with commencement speaker Michael Reagen.
"This is an incredibly special time for our students, who along with their family and friends celebrate achieving their educational goals and taking the next steps in their lives," said J. Dudley Goodlette, Interim District President. "This is a proud moment for our students, our community and all of us at Edison State College."
Goss is the Former Director of the Central Intelligence Agency and, in 2005, became the first Director of the Central Intelligence Agency under the newly signed Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act. The Sanibel resident continued as D/CIA until May 26, 2006. Goss served as the Congressman representing Southwest Florida for nearly 16 years. His congressional career focused on the environment, House ethics, senior issues, health care reform and the Rules Committee.
Goss was a leader on Everglades legislation and takes great pride in the passage of the Ricky Ray Bill, which offered relief to victims who contracted HIV through a contaminated blood supply. Goss was awarded the Distinguished Service Award in 2006. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in classical Greek from Yale University, graduating with high honors.
Frohlich graduated from Wake Forest University in 1973, and from the University of Florida School of Law in 1976, where he was managing editor of the Law Review. He has been practicing law continuously in Charlotte County since 1976, is Board Certified in Civil Trial Law by the Florida Bar and is nationally certified in civil trial advocacy by the National Board of Trial Advocacy.
Reagen was named President of The Greater Naples Chamber of Commerce and President of the Leadership Collier Foundation in 2002. He earned a Ph.D. (Syracuse University), an M.S. (University of Illinois), and a B.S. with honors (Fordham University). The author/editor of three books and 42 publications, he is an alumnus of The Senior State and Local Government Executive Program, JFK Kennedy School of Government (Harvard University).
Dr. Reagen advises the Council for International Visitors, the Civic Information Center and the Naples Press Club. Gulfshore Life magazine honored him in 2008 as one of the Men of the Year and in 2009 as a 'Man of Distinction.'