TNCC’s Top Two Academic Awards Being Presented during 44th Commencement Ceremony

Published: May 10, 2013

Thomas Nelson Community College (TNCC) named Michael D. Snyder and Megan V. Saunders as recipients of the 2012-2013 President’s and Vice President’s awards, respectively. In acknowledgement of the two summa cum laude graduates’ exceptional academic performance, the awards will be presented during TNCC’s 44th commencement exercises on Tuesday, May 14 at 7 p.m. at the Hampton Coliseum.

Snyder and Saunders are among nearly 1,400 students who have applied to graduate during the 2012-2013 academic year. This figure includes students who completed their curriculum requirements in summer 2012, fall 2012, and those who applied for graduation in spring 2013. Graduating students will receive Associate degrees, certificates, career studies certificates, or a combination of these academic credentials. Criteria for the President’s and Vice President’s awards include attaining the highest cumulative grade point average, completing at least 60 semester hours of course work and receiving an Associate’s Degree for the current year, and more.

A James City County resident, Snyder enrolled at Thomas Nelson in 2007 and will be awarded an Associate of Science Degree in Business Administration. He is also working toward an Associate of Science Degree in Engineering at TNCC and proudly pointed out that his wife, Christina, will be graduating during the May 14 ceremony as well.

The senior mechanical designer for Wyle CAS models, designs and documents mechanical systems for U.S. Army helicopters at Fort Eustis, Virginia. Despite the demands of work and school, Snyder said his daughters, Morgan and Sydney, are top priority.  Attending their softball games, orchestra recitals, marching band and color guard performances are his “extracurricular activities.” In 2005, Snyder put aside his duties as a volunteer firefighter/emergency medical technician after eight years of service to dedicate more time to his family and his education.

Snyder credits the Thomas Nelson experience for his drive to succeed through higher education. “…without the ability for me to take classes in Williamsburg and/or Hampton, I most likely would not have been able to pursue my education with my other responsibilities. My wife, Christina, most assuredly would not have had the opportunity … as well without the convenience of the Williamsburg Campus. As a lifetime learner, I am honored to say that Thomas Nelson Community College has been a part of my family’s education that has and will shape our family’s future,” he said.

Saunders, a Yorktown resident, enrolled at Thomas Nelson in 2011 and will receive an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Administrative Support Technology with specialization in Medical Office Administration. Her academic accomplishments allowed for a membership in the Phi Sigma chapter of Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society at TNCC. Saunders is also an avid volleyball player and is a member of the NASA, Coastal Community Church and Williamsburg Quarterpath co-ed volleyball teams. She balances her campus and community activities with her job as an account manager assistant at Peninsula Funeral Home, where her responsibilities include balancing, recording and verifying financial information.

Saunders, the daughter of Michael and DaNae Saunders, strives to excel at any endeavor she embarks upon. “I want to become the best I can in anything I do in life,” she said.



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