Opening Event for College’s 50th Anniversary Celebration a Hit

September 1, 2017
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A steady downpour that drenched Hampton Roads on Aug. 29 didn’t dampen the celebration at Thomas Nelson Community College. Students, faculty, staff and special guests gathered at the Hampton campus to enjoy a kick-off event for the College’s 50th anniversary celebration called Launch to 50.

The event, which also attracted several Thomas Nelson retirees, set the stage for an 18-month anniversary observance. See a photo array here. You may have to create an account or log in to Facebook to view the photos. 

The festivities in Wythe Hall’s Library Gallery included a performance by the Fife and Drums of Yorktown's Living History Associates, Ltd.; acknowledgement of the occasion by Governor Thomas Nelson Jr. courtesy of Yorktown’s Living History Associates, Ltd.; an archival exhibition featuring historic photographs; a celebratory toast; and countdown to 50 with a colorful confetti cannon blast.

“Thomas Nelson Community College is a college for the people. I can think of no better tribute to myself and other founding fathers and all of those who fought during the revolution in a struggle for independence than the establishment of a college built for and by the people,” said Gov. Nelson, who presented a declaration marking the occasion to Thomas Nelson President John Dever.    

Hampton Mayor Donnie Tuck also addressed the crowd and presented a proclamation to Dr. Dever. Saluting the College as a valuable resource, Tuck proclaimed Aug. 29, 2017 as Thomas Nelson Community College Day on behalf of the City of Hampton. “Your associate degree programs fill a valuable gap in our education system. Your career studies certificates help young and old alike get the skills they need to join the workforce quickly benefitting not just the students but the businesses that are anxious to hire mean and women who are educated and trained at Thomas Nelson Community College.  That’s just a small part of what you do for the community.  We look forward to another 50 years of growing and learning with Thomas Nelson,” said Tuck.

As a special treat, academic division deans showcased their best dessert designs in a cake competition won by Science, Engineering and Technology Dean Seyed Akhavi.

The celebration carried over to Aug. 30 with festive confetti cannon blasts in the Hampton campus courtyard and a fly over by an airplane with a trailing banner that read, “Happy 50th Thomas Nelson Community College.”