SMC hosts 49th commencement ceremony Saturday
Published 10:48 am Wednesday, May 4, 2016
Southwestern Michigan College hosts its 49th commencement Saturday at 11 a.m. in the gymnasium of the Charles O. Zollar Building on the Dowagiac campus.
SMC will confer 683 associate degrees and certificates on the 387-member Class of 2016.
Five — Morgan Adams of Dowagiac, Dakotah Haas of Decatur, Camilla Perez of Dowagiac, Karissa Steffens of Stevensville and Kayla Villegas of Watervliet — graduate with perfect 4.0 grade-point averages.
In addition, Ferris State University awards 33 bachelor’s degrees during the ceremony.
SMC alumnus Kelly L. Rose will deliver the commencement address.
Rose is chairman of Evergreen Recreational Vehicles, Lifestyle Luxury Recreational Vehicles, Skyline Recreational Vehicles, Stealth Enterprises and Starcraft Distribution.
He co-founded ASA Corp. at age 25 in 1977. In 1990, after selling his shares of that company, Rose purchased the assets of Starcraft Corp., taking it public in 1993.
He continued as chairman of the board and remained the largest shareholder of that company until he sold to another public company from California in 2006.
Rose was honored as the 1994 Indiana Manufacturing Entrepreneur of the Year and inducted into the RV/MH Hall of Fame in 2002.
He served for two years as chairman of the board of the Recreational Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA), which is looked upon as the highest recognition of his peers.
The Kelly and Karen Rose Foundation was established as a philanthropic entity in which the couple are very active in supporting numerous non-profit and charitable organizations.
The Roses, who met at SMC, have been married 44 years in August, which Kelly credits and solely attributes any successes he may have accomplished to his beautiful bride, a retired Elkhart General Hospital nurse.
Pastor Dan Thomas of Community Baptist Church, Edwardsburg, will provide the invocation.
Local graduates include: