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PA Graduate Says ‘God Makes All Things Work Together For Our Good’
Tigerville, SC– (December 12, 2018) North Greenville University (NGU) celebrated fall commencement on a cold wintry morning on Saturday, Dec. 8 in Turner Chapel. The Honorable Mike Burns from District 17 of the South Carolina House of Representatives addressed the over 200 undergraduates, graduates, doctoral candidates, and first Physician Assistant (PA) Medicine graduates.
Following the processional of the administration, faculty, and candidates, NGU President Dr. Gene C. Fant, Jr. welcomed all honored guests. Rev. Michael Blackwood, the executive pastor of Lifelong Church in Lyman, led the invocation. An Old Testament reading was offered by the Department Chair of Health Science Dr. Christine Haltiwanger. Department Chair of Secondary Education Andrew Hodges read New Testament passages, and the NGU Concert Band and NGU Concert Choir provided the music.
Rep. Burns told those assembled that the university is a great place, and has been here for many, many generations. “I can’t tell you the thrill it is to see the work that this university puts out through the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. It makes this state, country, and the world a better place.”
He talked about several House bills that he is involved in within his political office and then referred to a Rev. Billy Graham quote, “everybody wants to be a VIP, a very important person.”
Burns shared his meaning of the VIP acronym. “Vision; the Scripture tells us that when there is no vision, the people perish. We need to keep our vision in front of us so we’re always marching toward it. Integrity; we need to walk the walk and talk the talk. It’s not good enough to tell people what we believe, we need to live it. We need to be found faithful. Presence; we will be successful if we listen to the Holy Spirit in our lives. If we pause and listen to that voice down deep within us, He will guide us.”
He concluded his speech by charging the graduates with three ways to live out their lives. He said, “always do the right thing, always realize where your gifts and rights come from; not from government, but your creator, and if you put God first, you will have success.”
This commencement ceremony was meaningful for the graduates and families, but just as meaningful for the university. NGU graduated its first PA Medicine program class since its inception in 2017.
On November 1, 2016, NGU’s T. Walter Brashier Graduate School received approval from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) for its Master of Medical Science in Physician Assistant (PA) Medicine degree program and began offering classes at its Tim Brashier Campus in Greer in January 2017. Twenty students were selected out of over 500 applicants to participate in the inaugural class.
Top Photo: The Honorable Mike Burns, Representative for District 17 of the South Carolina House of Representatives, addressed the over 200 undergraduates, graduates, doctoral candidates, and first PA Medicine graduates at fall commencement on Saturday, December 8, 2018.
Second Photo: Kathryn Allen Wilkie (’16, P.A. ’18) from Sumter, is the first NGU undergraduate to be accepted and graduate from NGU’s PA Medicine program.