Lewis and Clark Community College Alumnus Kevin Edwards, left, and L&C President Ken Trzaska, pose for a photo on the red carpet prior to the 2024 Always Late TV Movie Awards held in the Hatheway Cultural Center this past March. JAN DONA/L&C Marketing & PR.GODFREY – Lewis and Clark Community College will celebrate its 53rd annual Commencement, May 15, featuring 2015 alumnus Kevin Edwards as the event’s keynote speaker.

The ceremony will take place at 6 p.m., at the Hatheway Cultural Center’s Ann Whitney Olin Theatre.

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“Everyone on campus looks forward to Commencement each year,” said L&C President Ken Trzaska. “It’s incredibly fulfilling to watch these students achieve this incredible milestone, and feel proud to have played a supporting role in their success.”

This year’s speaker was one of those graduates in 2015, and said he wouldn’t be where he is today without L&C.

"I went to college to learn skills to help me later in life, but I ended up learning a lot about myself,” Edwards said. “My experience at Lewis and Clark changed my outlook on the world and that changed my life. My time at L&C set me up for all the success I've had since.”

Edwards started at Lewis and Clark in 2010 and initially planned to pursue a career in law enforcement. While at L&C, he discovered an interest in the human experience, and would later follow that interest into a career in entertainment.

He spent years working in professional wrestling as a manager, producer and writer, eventually deciding to follow his passion for filmmaking.

Edwards’ foray into film started in 2012, and he continued to evolve into a full-time, award-winning independent filmmaker with his own production company, Always Late TV (ALTV).

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Edwards created the Always Late TV (ALTV) Movie Awards and brought the event to his alma mater in Spring 2023. The second annual Always Late TV Movie Awards evolved into a full-blown movie festival and awards show that took place in late March 2024.

This year’s Commencement will celebrate more than 600 graduates, with around 200 students slated to participate in the ceremony.

“Whether this night marks the end of a student’s college journey, or if they’re planning to transfer after Lewis and Clark, it will be a night to celebrate a major milestone,” said Vice President of Student Affairs Cherise Jackson. “Our students should be proud of all they have accomplished over the course of their time here.”

Tickets will be required for guests to attend the event. Each graduate will be allotted a pre-determined number of general admission tickets (TBD) to share with their guests.

Graduates will be able to pick up their tickets at a Grad Bash event the week before the ceremony, from noon-3:30 p.m., Wednesday, May 8, in the Hatheway Cultural Center’s upper lobby. In addition to tickets, graduates can sign up for the college’s free Alumni Association, pick up a graduation gift, and access career resources to help them in their job search. Graduates can also participate in an optional rehearsal at 3:30 p.m., following Grad Bash.

Guests and graduates needing accessibility accommodations during Commencement should contact the L&C Center for Access and Accommodations at www.lc.edu/access.

Additional guests on campus can watch the ceremony streamed live in The Commons, where an after party and concert, featuring the L&C Rock Ensemble, will take place immediately following the ceremony. Refreshments will be served.

The ceremony will also be streamed live online by Riverbender.com. To access the livestream, visit the college’s YouTube channel, www.youtube.com/lewisandclarkcc.

Questions? Contact Registrar Amanda Mitchell at (618) 468-5110 or akmitchell@lc.edu.

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